A delicious chocolate cake filled with an irresistible peppermint white chocolate filling, this chocolate peppermint bark roll cake is perfect for the Christmas holiday!
Don’t be intimidated by its festive swirl, follow my tips for a successful roll cake every time!
Christmas was never a Christmas without a roll cake.
I have so many memories of my mom making roll cakes on Christmas Eve. She would make at least one roll cake for our Christmas dinner. I was always mesmerized by the wirly swirly filling wondering how she managed to put it inside the rolled cake.
She was definitely the greatest magician ever!
Now it’s my turn to carry on the tradition. Seeing my family oooohing and aaaaahing over the beautiful roll cake it’s the most amazing Christmas gift.
Roll cakes have a bad reputation. They are hard to make. They crack. They leave an eggy aftertaste to name a few.
Today I will prove you these are all just excuses.
Making a roll cake is easy. I’m admitting it requires a little distraction free time, but what dessert doesn’t, right? We’re talking 2 minutes of sharp focus as soon as you take the cake out of the oven to roll it while still hot, a little patience while incorporating air into the cake batter, but the rest of the time is just waiting for the cake to cool or for the filling to set.
Does that sound hard?
Of course, there are a few tips you have to follow to make sure your cake is delicious and gorgeous at the same time.
Let’s start with the cake!
Eggs are one of the most important ingredients when making a roll cake. They are the working bees 🙂 They help the cake rise. You have to beat the eggs and sugar until they are frothy, thick, fluffy, and tripled in volume. This usually takes about 5 minutes.
While the eggs and sugar are whipping, sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt 3 times. Yes, 3 times, and this is very important. This way a lot of air is incorporated into the ingredients resulting in an airy cake.
To make sure the cake will be moist and tender in addition to being airy, (cocoa powder has the tendency to dry out desserts) a little milk is added with the flavorings – vanilla extract and peppermint extract. I added 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract and found out to be the right amount for me, but if you’re looking for a mintier cake, you can add few drops more.
When folding the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, I usually use a spatula. I notice my mixer can easily overmix the delicate batter resulting in a flat, very un-airy cake. No matter if you mix the ingredients by hand or with the mixer, make sure aren’t too many air bubbles, which means you’re over-folding.
Once the cake batter is done, pour it quickly in big dollops across almost the entire pan so you don’t have to spread it out so much.
Bake the cake until it springs back when pressed gently and the cake is starting to pull away from the sides. It’s a quick baking cake, it only takes 12-13 minutes.
While the cake is baking prepare your towel. I use about 1/2 – 2/3 cup powdered sugar sifted over a clean tea towel. The towel should be white white, not just almost white. I joke that, when making a roll cake, if your kitchen is not fully covered in powdered sugar, you did not use enough!
To prevent cracking, as soon as the cake is out of the oven, flip it over on the prepared tea towel. It’s very important for the cake to be rolled while hot. You’ll feel the heat from the cake through the towel as you roll it, it should be slightly uncomfortable, but bearable.
To roll, just take one of the short ends and tuck under as tightly as possible. The tighter you’re able to roll the cake, the better the roll will look!
Once the cake is rolled into the towel, leave it to cool completely! Two hours or longer if needed! Be patient and do not unroll the cake while still warm.
Let’s talk filling now!
Many cake rolls are filled with sweetened whip cream, which is what I grew up with. But my light and airy white chocolate peppermint filling will be what your guests will remember.
If eggs are important for the cake, butter is the main ingredient in the filling, that’s why I use Finlandia Butter! Finlandia butter is a European-style butter preferred by most French pastry chefs for baking. Delicious and creamy with a very rich taste, Finlandia butter is made from pure fresh milk from Finnish family-owned farms.
The secret to the best ever filling is whipping the butter instead of creaming it. Game changer!!
Start by adding the room temperature Finlandia butter to your mixing bowl. Keep in mind that butter must be softened, but not melty. You should be able to press your finger into the block of butter and make an indent easily.
Start whipping the butter on the lowest speed for 2-3 minutes. Add the cream cheese, melted white chocolate and heavy cream and continue to whip for another 3 minutes. Use baking white chocolate, not chocolate chips.
Gently fold in the sugar, about 1/2 cup at a time and the chopped candy cane chocolate. You could use chopped peppermint bark as well.
Increase the mixer’s speed to medium and whip the mixture for an additional 2-3 minutes.
The result? The lightest, most delicious white chocolate peppermint filling!
Now the magic!
Slowly unroll the cake and spread the filling all over it. An offset spatula is the only tool you need.
Roll the cake back up (without the towel, of course) and refrigerate for a couple of hours, or better overnight. This gives the filling time to firm up so it doesn’t squish out when you cut it. At this point, you can wrap the cake in plastic wrap and freeze until a later time. You can keep this chocolate peppermint bark roll cake in the freezer for up to a month. Thaw overnight in the fridge.
To finish this chocolate peppermint bark roll cake, you need a luscious ganache and some crushed candy cane.
My favorite way to make ganache is using chopped baking chocolate and heavy cream. A 2:1 ratio. 1 cup chocolate to 1/2 cup of cream. Heat in the microwave in 15 seconds intervals stirring after each addition.
Pour 2/3 of the ganache over the cake and let it slowly cover the entire cake. To speed up this process you may spread the ganache with a small spatula or the back of a spoon.
Chill the cake for 10-15 minutes before pouring the remaining ganache. Decorate with crushed candy canes!
Store the cake in the fridge for up to 4-5 days, although not one roll cake has lasted that long in my fridge.
Other recipe using Finlandia Butter – My favorite all butter sugar cookies!
Two secret ingredients make these all butter sugar cookies a family favorite and the first cookie to go at a party! No matter the season or the occasion, this is my go-to recipe for sugar cookies!
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Finlandia™. The opinions and text are all mine.