Ginger spiced sponge rolled with smooth mascarpone and cream and a ginger-infused pear compote. Elegantly topped with more luscious cream, pecans and crunchy pear wafers. This roulade will grace your dessert table at any time of year.
Place a couple of saucers in the freezer and sterilise your jars. Do this by washing the jars and lids thoroughly in warm, soapy water and then placing them in a low heat oven until required.
Place the pears, apples, lemon zest and juice, ground ginger and water into a heavy-based saucepan and over medium heat and cook for 15 minutes until the fruit is soft. Add the caster sugar and stem ginger, and continue to heat until the sugar has dissolved.
Turn the heat to high and cook at a rapid boil for 20-30 minutes, frequently stirring to prevent the bottom from sticking, until the fruit has thickened.
Remove from the heat and place a small dollop onto the cold saucer. Push your finger through the dollop, and if it stays separate, the compote is ready. If it isn't ready, then return the pan to the heat for another five minutes before testing. Ladle immediately into sterilised jars leaving 2cm from the top and seal immediately with a screw-top lid. Cool completely before using on. NOTE: this recipe makes more than is needed.
Pre-heat oven to 165°C (325°F) and line and grease a 33cmx23cm (13inx9in) baking pan with parchment paper and grease the paper too. Sift the flour, cornflour, ground ginger, salt and baking powder twice and set aside.
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the egg yolks on medium speed until creamy and slightly thickened. Slowly add the brown sugar and beat on high speed until thick and incorporated.
Add the wet ingredients: molasses, golden syrup and melted butter and beat until combined. Add the dry ingredients: sifted flour, cornflour, ground ginger, salt and baking powder and fold through until just combined.
In a separate bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Add a quarter to the batter and fold through using a large spatular, then fold through the remaining whites. Pour into the prepared baking pan and smooth.
Bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until the sponge springs back when pressed.
Whilst waiting for the sponge to bake, lay a tea towel flat on a table and dust with cocoa powder or icing sugar (or a combination of the two). Once you have removed the baking tray from the oven, flip the sponge onto the tea towel and then carefully remove the baking paper. (refer to my images above). Whilst still hot, roll the teatowel with the sponge into a tight roll and set it aside to cool completely.
Keeping the temprature of the oven the same, slices the pears finely. Press each slice into the caster sugar making sure to shake any excess off.
Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake for 15 minutes. Flip each slice over and bake for another 15minutes. Kep and eagle eye on them and remove when the sugar on the pear starts to caramelise and turn golden brown. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool until crisp.
Place the mascarpone cream into a bowl and beat until smooth. In a separate bowl, beat the whipped cream until soft peaks form. Combine the two along with the vanilla bean paste and beat until just combined.
Once the sponge has fully chilled then spread two thirds of the mascarpone cream over the sponge and smooth out with the back of a spoon. Then spread ½ a cup of pear compote onto the cream and sread out. Add more if needed. At one of the short ends of the spong, it will already be lifted from rolling in the tea towel. Re-roll the sponge starting at this end and place on your serving plate.
Spoon remaining mascarpone cream on top, sprinkle with pecans. Refrigerate for 20 minutes until cream has set a bit. This makes it easier to cut. Place pear wafers on the top and serve.
1. Store in the fridge covered with cling film for 3-4 days.