Ginger Yellow for Live Strong Day

14 April 2008

Apologies for the lack of postings lately – time really does fly, and I’ve been busy working on some exciting projects. Hopefully I can write about them soon, but in the meantime, I’m so glad that I made it to the Taste of Yellow event this year – as some of you already know, my dear fellow blogger Barbara has been organising this to support Live Strong Day in aid of cancer awareness.

I had a hard time deciding what to use to make yellow food, but somehow ginger came to mind – in Japan (and in many Asian countries) ginger is an everyday ingredient – much more common than garlic and very much part of our cuisine. (And I always take ginger tablets when I travel as I get really sick – it works for me and seems a good alternative to regular travel sickness tablets.)

Since I moved to the UK, I’ve been enjoying trying ginger in sweet recipes too – it works wonderfully well in many desserts and for someone who has a super sweet tooth like me, it was an excellent excuse to try another recipe for this great event.

I was flipping through some of my favourite books for ideas and the first recipe that caught my eye was ginger ice-cream – I’ve tried a ginger and custard recipe here, so I knew it couldn’t go wrong. Quite a few books have very similar recipes for ginger ice-cream, but I decided to go with the one in Eric Gower’s latest book as he uses brown sugar instead of ‘normal’ white sugar which sounded more intriguing (his recipe uses galangal instead of ginger too).

I’ve been meaning to write about this book, The Breakaway Cook, which is packed with so many inspiring recipes. Eric has lived in Japan for a long time and I really like the way he interprets Japanese cooking. I’m sure I’ll write about it again :) but meantime, head over to Eric’s new blog to check out some of his great recipes and ideas.

So, I had the first step sorted, but I felt like experimenting a bit with the ice-cream – then came up with the idea of pairing it with earl grey tea – in a Swiss roll shape! (I was inspired by a brown sugar ice-cream chocolate roulade recipe in this book.) I wasn’t sure how well the flavours would work together, but was really happy with the end result with neither overpowering the other (never mind the slightly wonky shape, the ice-cream was quite soft when I spread it so it went rather flat!). I added some ground tea leaves as well as brewed tea to the sponge which helped to offset the ginger too.

The flavours are quite subtle and it was perfect for my taste but you could make them stronger if you prefer. I made earl grey caramel sauce too, it was lovely together with the cake – rich warm sauce with the ice-cream – I indulged myself by having this dessert for breakfast…!

I had a little ice-cream left so rustled up some profiteroles too – you can’t go wrong with ginger & chocolate, and so the cute little ice-cream puffs disappeared really quickly! I dipped the top of the choux pastry in the chocolate sauce, but you can of course pour the sauce over when you serve.

The closing date for the Taste of Yellow event is the 19th of April, so there is just a little more time – I hope you can join and I’m looking forward to reading Barbara’s round-up next month!

Earl grey and ginger ice-cream roll with tea caramel sauce

Makes a roll about 25cm x 8cm

For the ginger ice-cream

NB: I used light brown sugar for the ice-cream as I suspected that dark brown sugar might overpower the other flavours – but I should try it some time.

50g peeled fresh ginger, roughly chopped
1 vanilla pod, split lengthways and seeds scraped out
250ml whole milk
250ml double cream
3 egg yolks
90g light brown sugar

For the early grey sponge
20g earl grey tea leaves
100ml water
3 medium eggs
60g caster sugar
1 teaspoon of earl grey tea leaves, ground in a blender
60g plain flour, sieved

For the earl grey caramel sauce
10g earl grey tea leaves
300ml water
60g caster sugar
100ml (about 6 tablespoons) double cream

For the ice-cream, place the milk, cream, 50g of the sugar, ginger and vanilla seeds (as well the pod) in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat, cover and let steep for about 10-15 minutes. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks and the rest of the sugar. Rewarm the milk mixture and strain into the yolk, whisking constantly. Discard the solids.

Place the mixture in a clean saucepan and put on a medium heat, constantly stirring with a wooden spoon until the custard thickens and coats the back of the spoon. Cool over ice-cold water and chill in the fridge. Churn the custard in an ice-cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

For the earl grey sponge, preheat the oven to 190C. Brew 20g of tea in 100ml of water (steep for about 5 minutes or so) then strain, squeezing the leaves with a spatula. Leave to cool.

Lightly whisk the eggs in a bowl, place on a bain-marie, add the sugar and whisk until it thickens a little. Remove from the heat and whisk until it falls in ribbons (you should see the trail for a few seconds). Lightly mix the 40ml of cooled tea (the quantity after straining should be around that much) and the ground tea leaves into the egg mixture with a spatula, followed by the flour.

Place a baking sheet on a tray, spread the batter roughly into a 30cm x 25cm rectangle. Smooth over the top and bake for about 8-10 minutes. Leave to cool. (You can use this sponge recipe for any type of sponge cake and the filling doesn’t have to be ice-cream.)

To assemble the cake, cut one of the shorter ends at an angle so as to taper the thickness of the sponge (this will be the outside edge, it makes it easier to seal the roll). Gently spread the ice-cream (it should be quite firm but spreadable) over the sponge with a palette knife, to about 1cm from each edge. Roll the cake along its length, finishing with the tapered edge. Cover with cling film and freeze until firm.

To make the caramel sauce, brew the tea, steep for about 10 minutes, strain the leaves (again, squeezing with a spatula) and simmer until it reduces by nearly half. Add the sugar and cook over low heat until it is syrupy; pour over the double cream carefully and whisk in.

Cut the cake into slices and serve with the warm sauce.

Food - Sweet    Misc    57 comments    Permalink

  • Keiko this is delightful. A fabulous combination of flavours and beautifully photographed. Thank you for supporting LiveSTRONG With A Taste Of Yellow. I very much appreciate it.

    Posted by barbara | 14 April 2008 #
  • wow wow wow!!! keiko, you are so creative and these definitely look like winning recipes :) i’m sure they taste as good as they look!

    Posted by shereen | 14 April 2008 #
  • Oh Keiko it all sounds so delicious I love ginger sweets and profiteroles!! I’m a profiterole fiend!

    Posted by Bron | 14 April 2008 #
  • The spongecake sounds so wonderful, particularly tea caramel sauce — so simple and sophisticated. Lovely photographs!

    Posted by Christine | 14 April 2008 #
  • As always, your photos are stunning.
    The Earl Grey sponge sounds fantastic. How could you have not had this for breakfast?

    Posted by Dayna | 14 April 2008 #
  • The pairing of ginger and chocolate is wonderful. Your roulade looks absolutely perfect

    Posted by Katie | 14 April 2008 #
  • I just stumbled upon your blog a few weeks ago and I never cease to be amazed by your wonderful photos. These profiteroles look incredible!

    Posted by AppetiteforChina | 14 April 2008 #
  • this really good idea , i would love to try this recipe it’s very interesting anyway i love your blog and i’m fan of you since long time but just appear :)

    Posted by zabaione | 14 April 2008 #
  • OH Keiko, as always you are AMAZING!!! I love love LOVE ginger and will definitely try this recipe!
    You should really post more often!!!
    Thanks for the pointer – was going to post about a particular yellow ingredient in my blog anyway but this will give the post an extra sumfink sunfink.

    Posted by Lisa | 14 April 2008 #
  • this sounds wonderful. ginger and chocolate is one of my favorite combinations.

    Posted by andreea | 14 April 2008 #
  • Delicious combination of flavours. The roll looks very pretty!

    Posted by linda | 14 April 2008 #
  • What a gorgeous post. The food looks really delicious.

    Posted by striggs | 14 April 2008 #
  • And I thought I had a lot of cookbooks ;) As always beautiful phototograpy and very inspiring.

    Posted by Jesper | 14 April 2008 #
  • こんにちは。
    Ginger is beautiful!

    Posted by y_and_r_d | 15 April 2008 #
  • Wow Keiko, you’ve done it again! Stunning photography and another recipe for me to try out.

    Thanks for always posting up a good read, beautiful photography and interesting recipes :)

    Posted by Linda | 15 April 2008 #
  • Keiko, You really are a genius! Thank-you for your inspiration. Ginger ice-cream is one of my faves, nd this places it into a whole new perspective! Thanks again.

    Posted by Rachel | 15 April 2008 #
  • I don’t mind waiting a long time for a new post from you… I’ll wait all my life. So beautiful, I can’t get over it!

    Posted by Aran | 15 April 2008 #
  • Dearest Keiko, your gateau roulé and petits choux look divine. I love your use of light. Such delicate pictures.
    All my love // x f

    Posted by fanny | 15 April 2008 #
  • Hi Keiko-san, I’ve been a huge fan of your blog for some time now. I’m impressed of your photos, particularly the way you use your colours is brilliant!!
    Also your cooking ability must be professional.
    am always looking forward to a new post!!

    Posted by mio | 16 April 2008 #
  • So wonderful! You, your blog, your recipies, your photos, your cat!! You’re the Canova of the little pastries.. I’m italian and I really adore those sweet creams, those little colorful painting of fruits and love!
    I’m so glad having found your blog.. Fantastic! Really..
    See you soon


    Posted by Calewiewien | 16 April 2008 #
  • This reminds me of “swiss cake rolls” from my childhood. Great cause and great job!

    Posted by Hillary | 16 April 2008 #
  • I simply love it!!!

    Posted by Miss Bebop | 17 April 2008 #
  • Hi Keiko, it’s my first comment on your blog but I read you since a long time! The ginger roll looks really delicious with it’s combination of flavours and your photos are gorgeous as always! Greetings from Italy :))

    Posted by Alessandra | 17 April 2008 #
  • Beautiful again. Of course.

    This site makes me so happy!! How did you get your roll to roll up so perfectly??

    Posted by Dorothy | 17 April 2008 #
  • Keiko, those pictures look so good, especially the profiteroles! And the roll cake reminds me of the Swiss rolls you find in Chinese bakeries.

    Posted by Karen | 17 April 2008 #
  • absolutely goregous. i am so impressed! your roll is just amazing — perfectly layered and perfectly rolled! and it sounds ginger-tastic. :-)

    Posted by katy | 17 April 2008 #
  • These looks devine – I adore ginger in all its forms (other than pickled!).

    Posted by Cakelaw | 20 April 2008 #
  • Stunning and beyond! Your pictures always amaze me. This looks and sounds positively delicious.

    Posted by Ann | 20 April 2008 #
  • What a lovely idea for ice cream. I should remember this post in the autumn when we have pumpkin pie and gingerbread…


    Posted by jasmine | 21 April 2008 #
  • Dear Keiko,

    This is absolutely inspiring!


    Posted by S | 21 April 2008 #
  • Great! I have been missing your post so much!! Happy you are back and with these marvellous things. Very inspiring indeed!

    Posted by campodifragole | 22 April 2008 #
  • Your dishes look so wonderful, especially the rolled cake with chocolate sauce. Yumm!

    Good luck with all your new projects.

    Sheltie Girl @ Gluten a Go Go

    Posted by Sheltie Girl | 23 April 2008 #
  • “rustled up some profiteroles”?! – すっごーい! シューを簡単に作っちゃうなんてケイコさんってさすがですっ!Respect!;)

    Posted by tamami | 23 April 2008 #
  • I’m enjoying to see your beautiful pictures this time as well!
    ケイコさんのお菓子はどれも美味しいそう :-)

    Posted by Noriko | 24 April 2008 #
  • Oh Keiko, how delightful that sounds! I am a huge fan of ginger so this would be ideal for me, but I lack your skill for making things look so perfect ;-) Gorgeous pics as always.

    Posted by Jeanne | 25 April 2008 #
  • Hi keiko!
    Let me introduce:I am sciopina!
    Many compliments for your blog. It is really special, rich…faboulouse!
    You are such a photografer..and food is amazing!
    Brava brava!

    Posted by sciopina | 25 April 2008 #
  • That roulade looks and sounds lovely!!! I will see if I can get my girlfriend to make it for me :)

    Posted by Lee Bladon | 27 April 2008 #
  • Hi i have question: have you got any good croistants recipe. you know just like french do. i was made some but it wasn’t the one i looking for. if you can please help me

    Posted by Eve | 27 April 2008 #
  • What a beautiful roulade! It’s such a joy to visit your blog to see (or even I should say “taste”?) pictures. And, of course, you have fantastic recipes. I’ll try this one sometime soon.

    I love ginger too – they remind me of being in a back garden of my parents picking up “young ginger” – for grilled fish or eaten raw with soybean miso. Now that is a sort of distant memory but I have lots of story to tell about the ginger.

    It sounds you’ve been working on great projects (exciting!) and I wish you all the best to you.

    Posted by kitsch-en | 27 April 2008 #
  • You are great! I love this food.

    Posted by Some | 28 April 2008 #
  • I so like all your photos…Always get SO hungry :D

    Posted by Lotte | 29 April 2008 #
  • dearest keiko, beautiful pictures and fabulous flavours, as always! i especially love the wonderful way in which you flavoured the sponge – tea + tea leaves for double the kick!have a great trip, and look forward to hearing about it when you return…

    Posted by Joycelyn | 30 April 2008 #
  • oooo. I’ve been thinking about an earl grey tea cake. I will definitely try this recipe very soon.

    Posted by melissa | 1 May 2008 #
  • perfect dessert, perfect flavor combinations, perfect everything!! great job!

    Posted by Antonio | 7 May 2008 #
  • Dear Keiko – I wish I could take pictures like you, sigh – you have such a good eye and natural style. Will you ever be coming back to SF?

    Posted by sam | 7 May 2008 #
  • Wow!

    This was pratically my french cuisine test at culinary school. I did make it, but it was pure luck, and that’s for sure!!! lol!

    amazing blog you have here;~~

    Posted by Manukah | 10 May 2008 #
  • Stunning as usual. That’s why you came to mind when I had to tag someone for Top 10 Pictures. I hope you don’t mind Keiko. It’s a really simple tag. Check it out here:

    Posted by celine | 12 May 2008 #
  • That looks like such a great feast. So appetizing. Your photography is so detailed. Great job! When I think of yellow food, I think of tumeric…whenever I cook with it, I always end up with yellow fingers and fingernails, it’s so potent!

    Posted by Linnea | 13 May 2008 #
  • hi keiko, just thought i’d drop by to say a quick hello, and i wonder what else i can make to go with the tea caramel sauce – it sounds so divine!

    Posted by Lil | 15 May 2008 #
  • Hi Keiko! I really really really soo enjoyed visiting your blog….!! Wow! Amazing pictures and very inspiring recipes. It’s all like a beautiful book, you know, the kind you buy simply because it’s so beautiful. Only here, the content is beautiful too! My compliments! However, I have a question, how come you named your blog “Nordljus”? It’s a Swedish word and I only wondered because I’m so curious. Very nice name though, go Sweden! :) Thanx again for lovely blog.

    Posted by Cecilia | 15 May 2008 #
  • Your site gave the devil in my heart big power. The devil said to me. “Eat this thing which I was sweet, and seemed to be delicious” As a result, I lost a fight with the devil. I was dieting so… (T_T)
    From Japan

    Posted by edamame | 15 May 2008 #
  • Hi Keiko,

    I’ve been checking out your posts since last year and I must say you never fail to wow me with all of your breath-taking photos and your passion in cooking.

    I also admire your efforts in incorporating Asian ingredients in most of your recipes. Can’t wait to read your upcoming adventures and KUDOS!

    Posted by Yvonne Woi | 18 May 2008 #
  • hi keiko! your blog is DIVINE! :)
    i was wondering if you could share the recipe for your profiterols? because they look so lovely! :)

    Posted by yijun | 19 May 2008 #
  • Everything looks so stunning Keiko. For some reason your link on my blog had gone bad and i could not chk your blog for 2 months. So glad to be back to see your gorgeous photographs.
    The roulade looks just perfect and so do the profiteroles..

    Posted by Kate | 22 May 2008 #
  • Dear Keiko,

    I’ve been showing your blog to my fellow food fans. Your blog has motivated me to learn more about French desserts. I hope I’ll be able to apply some of your recipes this summer, both in my own small kitchen and the cookware store/cooking school that I have been volunteering for. Also, looking at the pictures you post here makes my days at research so much brighter.

    With best regards, Sri

    Posted by Sri Utami | 30 May 2008 #
  • Hi everyone, thank you so much for all your kind notes and I’m sorry it took so long to get back.

    Eve – I normally use a recipe from one of my Japanese books, but I like Pierre Herme’s (The Cook’s Book) and Dan Lepard’s (Baking with Passion) also.

    Celine – thank you for your kind mention!

    Cecilia – I don’t speak any Swedish, but loved the sound (and meaning) of it :) I love Scandinavian culture, must go back soon…

    Yijun – I’ll try when I can, meanwhile you should be able to find many choux pastry recipes online!

    Posted by keiko | 1 July 2008 #
  • Dear Keiko,

    I just came across your blog and I love love love it! The posts are informative and inspiring and the pictures are awesome! I read somewhere that you owned your first camera when you started the blog, so I searched for an earlier posts. Honestly, I think you were really good since you started out! lols. Thank you for being such an inspiration :)



    Posted by Sam | 6 June 2010 #

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