Ring in the holidays with a yuletide log…a Gluten Free Pumpkin Roll with Cream Cheese and Chocolate Ganache Filling to be exact!
I may be a little late in posting this. I get it. Pumpkin is old news. Mint chocolate and gingerbread are the new flavors of the season.
Welcome to my life. I seem to always be a trend or two behind. Basically, don’t look at any of my photos from about third grade through high school. They aren’t pretty.
My mom insists that even though I thought I looked like a total nerd, I always had nice clothes and was “in style”. I take that comment with a grain of salt from the woman who hasn’t changed her hairstyle in over 3 decades. Haha! Just kidding mom. This is really just a test to see if you actually ever read my blog. If you do, you can be mad at me for the previous said comment. Okay???
But really, while all my friends were shopping at The Gap, Limited Too, and American Eagle, I was parusing the sale section of Dillard’s, Macy’s, and JCPenney’s with my mom…twice a year (back to school and winter). And, when I was feeling a wardrobe change without having to go and buy something new, I would grab clothes out of my mom’s closet and sport those in junior high and high school. Because, yeah, your mom definitely has cool enough clothes to wear when you’re a teenager.
Have I made my point???
I was NOT cool despite all the counter convincing on my mom’s part.
You know what…how about you just decide for yourself? I’m going to just go ahead and grace you with a fabulous duo of school pictures from the 7th and 8th grade.
The only thing not terrible about these pictures is the fact that they give hope to children across the world that no matter how awkward you look as a preteen/teenager, you may eventually grow out of it…eventually.
So there you have it. I feel so exposed showing the world just how “beautiful” I was back in the day. Can we just all agree that the 90’s were rough for me???
…okay, let’s just go ahead and fast forward a good 15-20 years and I think I turned out somewhat decent.
I’d like to believe that now I am ahead of the curve or at least right on point with my fashion sense, but in all reality I am probably just as delusional as I was back then thinking that I was too hot to trot. I’m confident that many people roll their eyes at my attempt to wear bright lipsticks, mismatched patterns, and top knots. But I’ll continue to live in my own fantasy world where I am the poster child for style. I’m happier that way.
And so yes, again, I do understand that pumpkin was “so last season”, but does that mean it is no longer delicious???
Pumpkin can still grace the buffet tables of your Christmas and New Year’s feasts and ain’t no one gonna complain about it. Especially if one of your menu items so happens to be this Gluten Free Pumpkin Roll with Cream Cheese and Chocolate Ganache Filling.
Yeah, you heard me: DOUBLE filling.
Not only is a sweet and tangy cream cheese filling rolled into this warmly spiced pumpkin roll, but chocolate ganache is rolled into the center as well. Doesn’t chocolate just make everything so much better?
Another option is to simply roll the cream cheese filling in the center and top the entire roll off with chocolate ganache. Either way, just don’t skip the chocolate. It’s too darn yummy and adds flare to this typical holiday dessert.
Now I have to admit that I was completely frightened…terrified…when I began baking this pumpkin roll. In all 33 years of my life, I have never attempted a cake roll. Cake rolls are for professionals, right???
I was amazed at how easily the cake baked and came right out of the pan. I had no issues rolling the cake up in a powdered sugar coated towel, and it didn’t break at all when I gently unrolled it to frost the inside. As long as you follow the steps correctly and exercise patience in letting the cake completely cool after being rolled into the towel, your success story should be as good as mine.
Obviously I realize this may not be the most beautiful of cake rolls you have ever seen, but does that really matter once you take a bite of heaven? I didn’t think so. The cake is moist and spongy with hints of ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon. I also sweetened the cake with a combination of cane sugar and pure maple syrup. It added a little more holiday pizzazz in my opinion.
The chocolate ganache gives another element and depth of flavor to the all too ordinary (yet still yummy) pumpkin/cream cheese combo. And to add extra texture, top the log off with some toffee bits or lightly toasted pecans. Every dessert needs a little crunch.
Oh, and did I mention I made this cake with a pre-made gluten free flour mix? Yes, I thought you would appreciate that seeing as how most of my recipes are a bit more labor intensive with the combination of flours I use. I still stand by the fact that you need to make your own mix for optimal texture and flavor, but in a recipe such as this that only uses a limited amount of flour, an all-purpose blend is acceptable.
I chose to use Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 baking mix which includes xanthan gum in it’s blend. Again, one less ingredient to bust out for baking.
So have yourself a very merry holly jolly joyful Christmas…pumpkin and all. Be a trend setter…or follower…or re-setter.
What is your favorite pumpkin dessert?
- For the cake:
- 3 eggs
- ⅔ cup sugar
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons molasses
- ⅔ cup canned 100% pure pumpkin puree
- 1 cup gluten free flour (I used Bob's Red Mill 1:1 baking mix, not their all-purpose blend), plus more for dusting*
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ cup powdered sugar for coating towel
- For the cream cheese filling:
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 1¼ cups powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- pinch of salt
- For the chocolate ganache:
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- ⅔ cup chocolate chips (milk, semi-sweet, or dark)
- Optional toppings:
- pecan pieces
- toffee bits
- powdered sugar
- whipped cream
- ice cream
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 10X15 jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Grease and lightly flour paper. Set aside.
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, beat together eggs, sugar, maple syrup, and molasses until smooth. Add pumpkin puree and beat until smooth.
- Add flour, salt, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and baking soda and beat until smooth.
- Pour mixture into pan and spread evenly to edges with an offset spatula. Drop pan onto counter a few times to even out batter and remove air bubbles so cake bakes evenly. Bake at 375 degrees for 11-13 minutes or until top of cake springs back at touch of finger and is not wet or sticky. Remove from oven.
- Dust a dish towel heavily with powdered sugar so cake does not stick. Quickly flip warm cake out onto towel. Gently remove paper from top of cake. Starting with a short end, tightly roll cake with towel, keeping towel inside the spiral. Set rolled cake on cooling rack and let come to room temperature, for at least 1 hour.
- While cake is cooling, make cream cheese filling by beating all ingredients together until smooth.
- Once cake is completely cooled and no longer warm, make chocolate ganache. In a microwave safe dish, heat whipping cream for 25-30 seconds. Add chocolate chips and stir until melted (this should take at least a minute of stirring). Return to microwave for 15 seconds if needed to melt some more.
- To assemble cake, gently unroll cake. Spread cream cheese filling all the way into tightly rolled edge of cake and out ½ inch away from all other edges (it will spread out to edges as you roll). Drizzle chocolate ganache over cream cheese filling and spread out to where cream cheese filling stops.
- Starting with the tightly rolled end, roll pumpkin cake back up while pulling away the towel. Get as tight as you can without squeezing filling out. Once rolled, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and chill in fridge or freezer until ready to cut.
- Top pumpkin roll with dusted powdered sugar, pecan pieces, toffee bits, whipped cream, or ice cream before serving.
- Store leftovers in fridge for up to 5 days or in freezer for up to 3 months.