How to make Japanese Fruit Roll Cake (Recipe with video)

    Yum
  • Prep Time
    25m
  • Cook Time
    25m
  • Yield
    6 - 8
  • Difficulty

The first time when I visited Tokyo, I was really thrilled by the number of bakeries and patisseries here. All look so good, so professional and soooo tempting to a person who has such a huge sweet tooth like me. One of the things that attracted and impressed me most was the beautiful combination of Western style and Eastern taste that was applied in many types of breads, cakes, and desserts here. It seemed to me that the Japanese pastry chefs had already reached the (more than) advanced level in their professions. And as a result, they were able to deliver such delightful and soft breads with the flavour of green tea, or create the incredible matcha or honey baumkuchens.

Inside a patisserie in Tokyo

 tokyo 3

 tokyo 1Matcha Baumkuchen

 tokyo 4This fruit roll cake is another example. I “met” this roll cake in almost every patisserie in Tokyo. It was amazing that all of them look very much alike: perfectly roll-shaped, bright golden cake with white cream and colorful fresh fruits inside – simple yet elegant, so attractive that passer-by just can’t resist the temptation to take a glance, and then… a slice (or a roll ;) ). Although the three parts, i.e. the cake, the whipped cream and the fruits, contain nothing special inside, the combination of them creates such a beautiful taste of softness, tenderness, creaminess, sweetness and super-fresh tang and crunchiness (of the fruits). This cake batter is also my most favorite recipe for roll cakes. Compared to the Swiss sponge roll cake, this recipe provides a much softer and more tender cake, which is also very flexible that can be rolled even when it’s cool completely.

japanese fruit roll cake recipe

 

JAPANESE FRUIT ROLL CAKE RECIPE

EQUIPMENT: One Square pan of 9 x 13 inches (22 x 33 cm) – however, a bit smaller (for example: 8 x 12 inches/ 20 x 30 cm) or bigger pan can be used instead.

INGREDIENTS

A. For the Cake

  • 4 egg yolks (18 – 20 gr/yolk) – room temperature
  • 20 gram (1-1/2 tablespoons) caster/ ultrafine sugar
  • 40 ml (2-2/3 tablespoons) milk – room temperature
  • 40 gram (3 tablespoons) vegetable oil
  • 3 ml (1/2 teaspoon) vanilla extract
  • 30 gram (1/4 cup) all purpose flour
  • 30 gram (3 tablespoons) corn starch
  • 4 egg whites (30 – 35 gr/egg white) – at room temperature
  • a pinch of salt
  • 3/8 teaspoon cream of tartar – or substituted by lemon juice or white vinegar of equivalent amount
  • 60 gram (4-1/2 tablespoons) caster/ ultrafined sugar – sifted

B. For the Filling

  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) whipping cream (35 – 40% fat)
  • 20 gram (1-1/2 tablespoons) caster/ ultrafined sugar – sifted
  • Fruits of your choice (I used 1 kiwi, 70 gr canned clementine and 8 – 10 strawberries)

INSTRUCTIONS

This recipe has a video tutorial and has been uploaded on my YouTube Channel (Savoury Days Kitchen). If you can’t play the video on this site, you can watch it directly on YouTube via this link.

Note: the video is in HD setting and has English subtitle, please press CC to activate it.

 

* Printable recipe:

  1. Preheat the oven at 170 °C (340 °F) – Top and bottom heat.
  2. Put the yolks and 20 gram sugar (1-1/2 tablespoons) in a bowl, gently beat them until the sugar is totally dissolved and incorporated with the yolks.
  3. Add milk, oil, vanilla and mix them well with the yolk and sugar.
  4. Sift flour and corn starch into the mixture, mix them well until we have a smooth and fully incorporated mixture.
  5. Whip egg whites with salt, cream of tartar and sugar until they form stiff peak, i.e. whipped egg whites become smooth and glossy, if you lift the beater, they form a peak that holds and stands.
  6. * Note: It is important that the egg whites, the bowl and the whisks are clean and completely free from fat of any kind (yolk, oil, butter, etc.), otherwise the egg whites won’t be successfully whipped.
  7. Fold the whipped egg whites into the yolk mixture until we have a fluffy, foamy and smooth batter without big air bubbles. The batter shouldn’t be too thin or runny.
  8. * Note:
    – If the egg whites are beaten too stiff that they form lumps when being folded into yolk mixture (instead of forming ripples as can be seen in the video), you can gently stir them with a wire whisk until they dissolve into the yolk mixture, then continue folding with a spatula. You can also fold these egg whites with a wire whisk if you’d like.
    – If the cake batter looks thin and runny with large air bubbles after folding, it can be explained by under-beaten egg whites or wrong folding technique applied which bursts the air bubbles in the egg whites. In this case, the cake may not rise properly in the oven and become firm after baking.
  9. Pour the batter into the pan (lined with parchment paper). Bake in the middle of the oven, at 170 °C (340 °F) in 25 – 30 minutes, until the cake turns dark golden. If you lightly press a finger on the cake, it should spring back in shape.
  10. * Baking temperature may change from oven to oven. For small oven or oven with unevenly heat, you may need to bake at lower rack and lower temperature (150 – 160 °C / 300 – 320 °F). Also, when baking with an oven that has a fan, the temperature should be 10 – 15°C lower than the temperature stated above. More details on how to set oven temperature can be seen at this post.
  11. Take the cake out of the pan and remove the parchment paper. Let it cool down on a rack.
  12. Meanwhile, prepare the filling:
  13. Whip whipping cream with sugar until it forms stiff peak. When the cream looks thicker and forms trails, it’s best to set the speed to low and continue whipping at this speed. This helps to avoid over-whipping the cream, which will make it curdled.
  14. Chop fruits into pieces. Put the whipped cream and fruits in refrigerator for 30 minutes. The cream will get thicker, thus easier to be spread on cake.
  15. When the cake is totally cool, cut off the edges, which are usually dry and easily crack when rolling. Put the cake on an aluminum foil (or parchment paper if you’d prefer) with the brown side turning up.
  16. Spread the whipped cream on the cake, leaving 0.5 cm (0.2 inch) on the two side edges and 2 cm (0.8 inch) on the bottom edge (as the cream will be pushed to the end when rolling). Lay fruits onto the cream.
  17. Gently but decisively roll the cake over. Aluminum foil may help if you’re not familiar with rolling cake. As aluminum foil is quite hard, it’s easier to hold the shape of the roll. Remember to roll the cake over in decisive motion. My experience shows that the more hesitant we are, the more easily we can break the cake.
  18. Wrap the roll with cling film. Chill it in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours. The cake is best to be served cool.

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10 Comments

Kavitha

The video looks great. I tried this recipe. Though the cake turns out good, it breaks while rolling. I did not overbake it. I wonder what went wrong.

Reply
Lin

So glad I followed this recipe, simple and great taste!!! Made my 2nd cake today, turned out perfect again! Thanks so much!

If I want to make chocolate and mocha flavors, wondering if you have attempted before, if so, would you mind sharing the recipes too?

Thanks heaps!

Reply
Linh Trang

Hi Lin. I’m sorry for my late reply. For chocolate flavor, you can substitute 10 – 15 g cornstarch in the recipe with cocoa power, the rest of ingredients remain. For mocha flavor, you can mix some instant coffee powder with the flour, or replace some milk with coffee. Hope this helps :)

Reply
Tiffany

Wow, this is a great recipe! The cake turned out beautiful and tastes so authentic :-D

Reply
Rita

Thank you for such an amazing roll cake. It’s so soft, fragrant, creamy and fruity. Delicious combination. I follow the recipe exactly and it is a success!! Thank you again.

Reply
Linh Trang

You’re welcome. Thank you very much for your feedback, too. I’m very glad that you liked the cake :)

Reply

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