Pumpkin and Ginger Swiss Roll

Pumpkin is a bit of a novelty in the UK. We’re just about getting used to carving Jack-O’-Lanterns at the end of October – or rather actually being able to readily find pumpkins at all. I grabbed a few tins of canned pumpkin this year when I saw them, they’re usually around because of American expats who are hankering after Thanksgiving concoctions and then thought – what the hell do I do with these?

A friend came for lunch yesterday, she wanted to bake while her boyfriend and the husband slunk off to play computer games. We were like regular 50s housewives. She specifically wanted to make Swiss Roll. This was supposed to be a posh ‘roulade’. I only had a small tin though so rather than it being an elegant cylinder, it was a rather more rustic concoction. It all disappeared though, which is the real test?


  • 3/4 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 extra large eggs
  • 1/2 cup soft brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup caster sugar
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • Filling: 125g unsalted butter, softened
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 30g stem ginger in syrup, drained and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 375F
  2. Grease and line your baking tray – ours was 13×7 inches
  3. Cream the eggs and sugar together until thickened and lighter in colour and then add the pumpkin while mixing slowly.
  4. Sift the rest of the dry ingredients together and add to the bowl until just incorporated.
  5. Pour into the pan and spread out as evenly as possible.
  6. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the top springs back when you gently touch it. Let it cool in the tray for 2-3 minutes then move to a wire rack.
  7. Prepare the filling while it’s cooking.  Cream the butter and sugar, then add the chopped and ground ginger and the vanilla and just mix them through. Don’t overbeat.
  8. When the sponge is cooled, place cling film on top followed by a large chopping board, and flip the sponge over on to the other side. 
  9. Peel off the parchment paper and spread out the filling.
  10. Grab the cling film from underneath and roll the sponge widthways, evenly yet firmly from the shorter side of the sponge to the end.  “Fasten” it with the cling film and let it sit for a while.
  11. Unwrap the cling film to serve and it should stay in a neat sausage!

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