Meyer lemons are one of my favorite ingredients during the transition from winter to spring – something about their smooth golden skin propels me into sunny days with bottomless blue skies. A cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange, the Meyer lemon has an aromatic floral quality to it that instantly enlivens even the humblest pantry staples.
In the case of this lemon-blueberry roll, Meyers add pure lemon essence to ribbons of yellow sponge cake batter, and whipped egg whites create volume. I used blueberry preserves for my filling, whisking in a few teaspoons of Meyer lemon zest for brightness. The result is a light and refreshing cake – ideal for spring!
Meyer Lemon-Blueberry Roll
Adapted from Joy of Cooking
Sifted powdered sugar, for dusting
3/4 cup cake flour*
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
4 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp Meyer lemon zest
2 Tbsp fresh Meyer lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup blueberry preserves
1-2 tsp Meyer lemon zest
Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 10 1/2 x 15 1/2-inch jelly roll pan with nonstick spray, then line bottom with parchment paper; spray the paper with nonstick spray. Dust a clean kitchen towel with powdered sugar and set aside. Whisk together cake flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl.
Beat egg yolks in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until light, then gradually add sugar and beat until creamy. Beat in lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla until combined. Reduce speed to low and gradually add flour mixture; beat just until incorporated. Using an electric hand mixer with clean and dry beaters, beat egg whites in a clean bowl until stiff but not dry. Using a spatula, carefully fold egg whites into the cake batter in 3 additions.
Pour batter into prepared pan, smoothing with an offset spatula and bake 10 to 12 minutes, until puffed and golden. Remove from oven and loosen cake edges with an offset spatula. Invert pan onto prepared kitchen towel and peel off parchment paper; trim any uneven edges. Roll the hot unfilled cake with the towel; set on a wire rack to cool completely.
When ready to fill cake, whisk preserves and lemon zest in a small bowl. Unroll cake and use a small spatula or pastry brush to spread preserves in an even layer. Use the towel as a guide to roll up filled cake and place seam side down on a platter. Chill for 1 hour before dusting with powdered sugar and slicing with a sharp knife. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 days.
*Make your own cake flour: place 2 tablespoons cornstarch in an empty 1-cup measure, then top up with flour. Sift the mixture several times to evenly distribute the cornstarch.
Yield – 12 slices (serving size: 1 slice)
Calories – 150
Carbs – 30