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The Great British Baking Show, has recently become our evening viewing of choice, and some of their challenges make me rather nostalgic for childhood flavors. After watching the Sponge Roll episode, I immediately looked up a recipe in the “quintessential guide to New Zealand cuisine” the Edmonds Cookbook, and baked my own version a few days later.

Although the resulting cake would have fallen well short of the judges high standards and surely would have caused me to be sent promptly home, I had fun making it, and we definitely enjoyed the less than aesthetically perfect, rather tasty result.


sponge roll

3 eggs

pinch of salt

1/2 cup caster sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence

5 tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

25 grams of butter, melted

icing sugar

whipped cream

Using an electric mixer, beat eggs and salt for 2 minutes. Add sugar and essence and beat until thick and pale. Sift flour and baking powder together. Fold lightly into egg mixture. Fold in butter. Pour into a greased 20 by 30 cm sponge roll tin. Bake at 200C for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden and cake springs back when lightly touched. Turn onto a cloth sprinkled with icing sugar. Roll into a log, including the cloth in the roll, working from the short side. Set aside until cold. Carefully unroll log. Spread with whipped cream. Again roll from the short side but do not include the cloth. To serve, cut into slices using a sharp knife.


Recipe adapted from Edmonds Illustrated Cookbook 2, July 2000