Ina’s pumpkin roulade – kinda sorta

At some point last week, I saw part of a Food Network Thanksgiving special where Ina Garten of Barefoot Contessa fame was featured.  The itty-bitty section I saw included her talking about a pumpkin roulade with ginger buttercream.  From the moment I heard those words, I wanted to make that cake.

However, after three trips to the local Jewel to get stuff for today’s big cook (cooking for the boss), I realized that I did not have extra-large eggs (which pretty much as a rule I never buy), mascarpone cheese, heavy cream, or crystallized ginger.  Well, shit.  So after getting done cooking for other people, I decided to fit Ina’s recipe to what I did have in the house.  The results were pretty dang good.

However, if and when I make this again, I will cut back on the sugar in the filling – and probably cut back on the filling itself.  I used the entire batch – hey, it’s a Thanksgiving goodie and we all know those calories, fat grams, etc. DO NOT COUNT – and will only use about 2/3 of it the next time around.

Pumpkin Roll Cake

Adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe (linked above)


1/3 cup brown rice flour

1/4 cup tapioca flour

3 tbsp potato starch

3/4 tsp xanthan gum

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp saigon cinnamon

1 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp kosher salt

3 large eggs

1 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup canned pumpkin (NOT the pie filling, please)

1/4 cup powdered sugar


16 ounces cream cheese

1 1/4 cup powdered sugar (this is the original amount; I will cut it back to 3/4 to 1 cup next time)

2 tbsp half and half

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Grease a 13×18 sheet pan, line it with parchment, then grease the parchment.

Sift the cake’s dry ingredients (except sugars) into a small bowl.  Stir them together.

Crack those eggs and get them into your mixer bowl.  Add the granulated sugar and mix on medium speed until the mixture is light yellow and thickened.  Drop the speed to low and slowly add the pumpkin, then the dry ingredients you sifted earlier.  Continue to mix until combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and use an offset spatula (I didn’t and it sucked the big one) to spread the batter evenly across the pan.  Put in the oven and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean.

While the cake is baking, prep your “rolling area” – I took two long cooling racks, covered them with a clean white towel, and then dusted the towel with the 1/4 cup powdered sugar.

When the cake is done, remove from the oven and make sure the sides of the cake are loosened from the pan by running a butter knife or some such thing around the edges.  Carefully & quickly invert the pan over the rolling area and clap it down on the sugary towel.  Remove the pan.  Peel the parchment paper off the cake and then slowly and carefully roll the cake using the towel (I let the towel touch the cake all the way through the process so the cake doesn’t have an opportunity to stick to itself), starting from a narrow side.  Allow to cool completely on the cooling racks that are already conveniently sitting there.

By the way, watch how hard you “clap” the pan down on the towel.  I spent 45 minutes cleaning powdered sugar off of everything in the vicinity.

While the cake is cooling, make the filling.  In a clean mixer bowl, whip the cream cheese smooth (it helps to let it sit on the counter for 10 to 15 minutes to take some of the chill off before starting).  Add the half and half and powdered sugar.  Mix until smooth.

When the cake is completely cooled, slowly and gently unroll the cake.  Spread the desired amount of filling over the exposed side of the cake, then roll the cake back up – without the towel.  Chill.  For presentation, chop off the ends of the cake and dust with additional powdered sugar.

Those cake ends are just an excuse to taste the end product, you know.

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5 thoughts on “Ina’s pumpkin roulade – kinda sorta

  1. Wow, this is impressive. I love pumpkin desserts and even though I am a timid gf baker, I might even try this. Thanks for converting the recipe!

  2. I live in Denver, and that means 90% of all baking recipes need to be adjusted for high altitude. I’d love to try this, but I haven’t been brave enough to bake anything gluten-free yet.

    Do you have any idea how to do this with gluten free recipes? Any feedback would be appreciated.

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