This no-towel pumpkin roll is very easy-peasy in that you don't need a towel or cloth to make a pumpkin roll. No kidding.
Total Time: 45-47 Minutes
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Inactive Cook Time: 15-17 Minutes
When I first read about the recipe of making pumpkin roll with a towel, my first reaction was, "Really? Are you kidding?"
Then, I watched the cooking channel. A celebrity chef did the same thing. So, the first pumpkin roll I made followed the steps by using a towel. It bothered me. Seriously! It bugs me since I heard about it. I just felt so gross about the idea. Even with a brand-new towel, I still can’t get over it.
In fact, I have relatives that hate the idea so much that they would rather not make it. So, I guess I am not the only one.
Then, all of a sudden, I remember making a Swiss roll in the 8th grade that didn't require a towel, and it worked perfectly. DING, DING, DING, DING. So, I thought, why didn't I give it a try with the jelly roll recipe.
There you go. Tada...I did it in the first trial. I am so thrilled to share this success with you. Once you did it, it will just ingrain in your brain. It is a skill that you do it and forget it. When you do it again the next time, you will just automatically do it as a part of the preparation process. No instructions needed.
The first time may take you a while to roll it. Just remember, practice makes perfect. Once you learn this skill, you can apply it to any jelly roll and cake roll recipes.
I know everybody may have their favorite pumpkin roll recipe. Please feel free to use your own and share it in the comment section below.
If you use your own recipe, skip all the directions involving the towel or cloth and follow the steps below to make your no-towel pumpkin roll.
Before moving on, I want to introduce you to some essential ingredients and tools that will affect the outcome.
Cake flour is milled into a finer, more gentle texture that has a lower protein count between 6 % and 8%. It generally results in a better rise and texture when making a cake. While normally bleached, companies like King Arthur sell an unbleached wheat flour that contains cornstarch. All-purpose flour that contains cornstarch is often used when consumers are unable to buy cake flour. The all-purpose blend, however, is denser than cake flour because of the glutinous difference between cake and all-purpose flour.
I did try using all-purpose flour and cake flour on this recipe at different times.
All-purpose flour is pretty much a staple in your pantry and convenient. Cake flour is like a specialty. It is definitely lighter.
If I use cake flour for this no-towel pumpkin roll, I add 1 1/3 cups
instead of 1 cup all purpose flour. Still, the batter and the cake come
out lighter in weight and softer and airier in texture.
For the rolling part, I would recommend using all-purpose flour if you are a beginner. Once you perfect the rolling technique, you can switch to the cake flour. The cake is softer to roll and easier to form in a nicer shape.
My husband's family loves pumpkin roll. So, I make it all the time, even if it is not during the holiday season.
Whenever I make it, I try something different. I hope I can share all of my findings, experiences, and tips in order to save you the time and frustrations I encounter.
I have been telling you to do this no-towel pumpkin roll lengthwise, but I found that there are lots of professional pastry chefs and bakeries that roll it width-wise. You might wonder which way is better, right? Well, does it really make any difference?
Yes, it does make a BIG difference. So, let's find out.
First of all, let's get this straight.
Overall, I still love to roll this no-towel pumpkin roll lengthwise mainly because of its taste. Please feel free to pick the best way to fulfill your needs.
I would love to hear from you which method you prefer to roll your pumpkin roll and the reasons behind it. Please share below in the comments section so other readers will get a chance to learn from your rolling experience.
I have been using wax paper to make this no-towel pumpkin roll since I gave up that "stinking" towel. One day, I decided to make another one and realized I was out of wax paper.
Instead of going to the supermarket late in the evening, I decided to use parchment paper. Here is what I found in their differences.
In conclusion, you can either use wax paper or parchment paper. It depends on your comfort level. Each has its own pros and cons.
Now, we covered the flour and the baking paper. Are you ready to start?
Once you get a good grasp of these steps, you will be able to discard the towel as it will become an instinct when making pumpkin roll or other cake rolls.
The recipe below is a twisted one similar to Libby's pumpkin roll. Unlike the original recipe, you will use a whole can of pumpkin. You don't need to worry about what you are going to do with the leftover.
For Cake Only
1 Cup All-Purpose Flour or 1 1/3 Cups Cake Flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1-15 ounces can pumpkin purée
For Filling Only
1-8 ounce package of cream cheese in room temperature
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
6 tablespoons butter at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Powdered sugar (for dusting; optional)
Use this plate to serve this delicious pumpkin roll. Everyone will find out your secret recipe at the bottom of the plate. You can also customize it.
These are the main 3 reasons why your pumpkin roll cracks.
When you first roll the cake, press it a little bit harder to let the very first section of the cake and filling stick together tightly. That’s your foundation as you keep rolling. The tighter the core, the better the shape your pumpkin roll will come out which lowers the probability that it splits or cracks on you.
I don't roll my cake when it is warm. I tried that method like many recipes out there, and it never worked. The cake cracked. When I unrolled it, it kept rolling back on me when I tried to put the filling on the cake.
I only roll my cake after it cools down. I leave it at room temperature for about an hour after coming out of the oven. Room temperature inside my house is around 68F (20C). Adjust the time accordingly, but remember that leaving it too long will make it too dry to roll.
Are both your baking soda and baking powder expired? These 2 play a very significant role in your pumpkin roll. While you might not expect these 2 ingredients to affect a cake's texture, they result in your success of a perfect cake roll.
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