Saturday, April 3, 2010

RECIPE - Bolo de Rolo

In the previous post, I mentioned that making a bolo de rolo at home is not anything for an amateur or a weekend cook to try. It involves making six sponge cakes of an extreme thinness and then rolling all of them together to create a roll of up to twenty layers - without the whole damn thing falling apart! As far as bolo de rolo goes, I'm a firm subscriber to the "don't try this at home" theory.

That being said, I'm including a recipe here at Flavors of Brazil for this iconic cake from Pernambuco state in the northeast of Brazil because it's interesting to know just how this cake is constructed, and because someone might just be fool enough to want to give it a try. Should they do so and succeed, I can guarantee the result with definitely impress even the most jaded dinner guest.

This cake cannot be made with three identical baking sheets of approximately 12x18x1 inch (30x45x2 cm). You will also need three large, clean kitchen towels of the same size or larger for turning out the cakes once they are baked.

So here goes....
RECIPE - Bolo de Rolo

1/2 lb (250 gr.) unsalted butter, softened
6 oz. guava jelly (can substitute other jellies or jams)
6 whole eggs
1/2 lb. (250 gr.) cake flour
1/3 lb. (200 gr.) sugar
granulated sugar for dusting cakes
2 Tbsp. water or white wine for diluting the jam
Using a whisk or egg beater, beat the sugar and butter together in a large bowl until you have a light, fluffy cream. Add the eggs, one by one, making sure that the yolks are skinless, beating the mixture after the addition of each egg.  Using a silicone spoon, add the cake flour in small quantities, gently folding in each addition until you have a fine, light batter. Reserve.

In a small saucepan, break up the jam or jelly with a fork, then place over low heat. Add the water or wine and heat, stirring continuously, until the mixture is melted. Reserve.

 Grease the three cake pans (see above) generously with unsalted butter and dust with cake flour. Using a wooden spoon spread 6 spoonfuls of the cake batter in each pan - one spoonful in each corner, and two in the middle of the pan. Using a silicone spatula, spread out the batter to cover the entire pan with a thin layer of batter.

One at a time, cook each cake in a preheated 350F degree oven for approximately 10 minutes. The cake must not color. Check for doneness by touching the surface of the cake with a fingertip. If the cake is firm, remove from oven, and turn the cake out onto a new or clean kitchen towel that has been generously dusted with granulated sugar. Repeat this process for the two remaining cakes.

Trim the edges of each cake to make them even. Spread a very thin layer of the jam or jelly across the entire surface of each of the three cakes, reaching all the way to the edges.

Using the kitchen towel to aid, roll the first cake into a tight roll, rolling from the shorter side of the rectangle. Carefully place the roll at the end of the second cake, and roll the second cake onto the first, starting where the first roll ended. Do the same with the third cake, rolling all three together tightly. Wrap the completed bolo de rolo in plastic wrap and reserve.

Wash and regrease the three cake pans, and repeat the spreading of 6 spoonfuls of batter in each pan. Bake each for approximately 10 minutes as before. Turn out onto the kitchen towels, having redusted them with sugar. Repeat the spreading of jam or jelly on the three new cakes. Remove the bolo de rolo from the plastic wrap, and continue to roll and construct the log. One you have a roll of all six cakes rolled together, place the finished product in plastic wrap, place in refrigerator until firm.

To serve, slice the roll across the layers into thin slices, place two slices on each plate, and top with whipped cream if desired.

Recipe translated and adapted from "Muito + Receitas"
See what I mean? As the saying goes, this recipe sounds like "a piece of cake."


  1. Yeah.. without the step-by-step photographs the assembly of this beautiful layer cake is rather scary for me :-)

    Happy Easter.

    Tuty @Scentofspice

  2. I totally understand. If I ever get up the courage to actually attempt this at home, I'll be sure to have a camera at hand to record the success (or more probable failure!) In the meantime, I'll buy my bolo de rolo at a nearby bakery.

  3. I have made it from the step by step instructions/pics from this website and it turned out great!! also there is this great youtube video

  4. Yummy! This recipe is new to me but when I tried this the whole family enjoyed.

    Look at House cleaning Warwick NY site info