Teaching Tuesday-Pumpkin Roll

The past few days have been fairly cool here in Ohio, and I have noticed that our trees are already beginning to change. These, along with my having to get inventory ready for the Christmas cabin, make me think of Autumn, which leads me to comfort foods. So here is one of my favorites, a Pumpkin Roll. This is based on a Libby brand recipe, and is pretty easy to master. But of course, the best part is that it tastes great! 


1/4 cup powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)

3/4 cup all-purpose flour *one baker swears by adding an additional tablespoon to the cup

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

   2 teaspoon cinnamon 

   1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice 

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 

1/4 teaspoon salt

   3 large eggs

   1 cup granulated sugar OR 3/4C of brown sugar, your choice 

2/3 cup pure Pumpkin puree

   1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

   1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened *see note in tips/hints

   3/4 to 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted

   6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened *see note in tips/hints

   1 teaspoon vanilla extract


PREHEAT oven to 375 degrees F. Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan; line with wax paper. Grease and flour paper. Sprinkle towel with powdered sugar.

COMBINE flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt in small bowl. Beat eggs and sugar in large mixer bowl until thick. Beat in pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture. Spread evenly into prepared pan. Sprinkle with nuts.

BAKE for 13 to 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. Immediately loosen and turn cake onto prepared towel. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool on wire rack.

BEAT cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl until smooth. Carefully unroll cake; remove towel. Spread cream cheese mixture over cake. Reroll cake. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving, if desired.

Tips and Hints

-Use waxed paper in the bottom of the pan before baking, then peel it off when the cake is done baking, apply new sheets of wax paper to the top and bottom of the cake and roll up. 

-Allow to cool for about 30 minutes, then unroll, remove wax paper, frost and roll up again. 

-Be sure to ring out the towel very well, and don't undercook the cake. If this is too moist it will stick to the towel and you'll have a mess. Roll the finished cake tightly in plastic wrap, and it will keep it's shape nicely as it chills.

-Soften the cream cheese and butter but do not let them come to room temperature. The filling needs to be soft enough to spread, but not so soft that it squishes when you roll the cake.

 -You can use a baking sheet instead of a jelly pan with good results, if you choose. 

-Try putting the powdered sugar covered towel on top of the cake while it is still in the pan, then put a large baking rack on top of that, THEN flip the whole thing over. This tends to be less messy and easier to accomplish. 

- Be sure to let the cake cool all the way in the towel before you try adding the filling, otherwise the filling tends to get too loose and it runs out the sides. 

- Even if you are in a hurry, allow the roll to sit at least 5 min after you invert it onto the towel, then roll it up. Unrolling it when it is still lukewarm is not a problem, just be careful when inserting the cream. If you use too much, it will come out the end. Many people use less than this recipe makes for just that reason, so feel free to decrease the amount you use. 

-After the roll is completely cooled, it is a good idea to wrap it in plastic wrap and then foil, and then toss into the freezer. It is a lot easier to cut the rolls when they are still slightly frozen, and this way you can make them ahead of time. They do keep really well. 

- For an unique taste treat, try substituting a good sized splash of Grand Mariner in place of the vanilla in the filling.

- Try cutting the roll in half and wrapping in a decorative towel, or a napkin tie with a piece of ribbon or raffia. They make great gifts for your friends and neighbors, or hostess gifts for all of your holiday parties!

If you are a visual person or would like to compare recipes, try looking at this

video http://video.about.com/baking/Holiday-Pumpkin-Roll.htm  and happy baking!

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