Monday, March 8, 2010

Chocolate Apricot Roll with Lacquer Glaze

Ta Da! After much procrastination the Chocolate Apricot Roll with Lacquer Glaze is here, thanks to Raymond and Faithy.

I procrastinated all weekend and decided against making it. It sounded complicated. It sounded extremely sweet. It sounded almost too chocolate-ly. My nemesis also lurked within the recipe, namely folding in flour. After reading Raymond's and Faithy's posts late Sunday night, there was no way I could not make this cake.

I understood Rose's explanation for creating this cake; chocolate dipped apricots are a Christmas treat for us courtesy of relatives who still live in the midst of central California's farmland. Each year, the most delectible box of glaceed jumbo apricots, half dipped in dark chocolate, the other half in white chocolate, are sent up north by my aunt, along with chocolate covered jumbo muscat raisins. It's always our favorite things to unwrap!

Levkar sounded intriguing. It was fun cooking it up, sort of in the lemon curd category. It is delicious stuff. While it was cooling, I whipped up the syrup and then the ganache. The cake went together surprisingly easy. I used the whisk beater instead of a spatula for folding in the flour and it was much easier. With the cake baked and cooling, I faced the Lacquer dilemma, gelatin or agar? That was the question.

Being vegetarian, not vegan, just run of the mill lacto-ovo, I couldn't bring myself to use gelatin, not even for Rose. Having no idea if agar would work, I substituted an even amount, following the same instructions. It seemed to work but quite a lot did not dissolve and was left in the strainer. The lacquer didn't seem any worse for wear and drew loads of oooh's and ahhh's. Except I missed the step of getting it to the serving platter properly.

It's a show stopper cake but not as flavorful as I was anticipating. Everyone who tasted it is of the same opinion, except eldest granddaughter. She loves it and can discern every flavor but she has an ultra sensitive palette. I tease her she should grow up to be a professional taste tester.
(That's her "painting" the syrup)

Baking this cake had the potential to nail me to the wall. And it would have except for the HCB'ers. Being able to read everyone's posts while baking spurred me on to keep going, give it a try. I'm so glad I did. This recipe taught me a great deal. I'll make it again, adding spice, maybe orange zest to the cake batter for a bit more flavor.


  1. Vicki, glad you baked the cake! I'm sorry to hear that you didn't find it as flavorful as you anticipated it to be. I'm surprised to hear that agar works as well for the glaze.. :D Your cake looks perfectly put together!

  2. Vicki.. I feel the same way... I was not going to do this and then ta-da, started to read the post and it was I NEED TO MAKE IT NOW!

    Guess we are a good encentive group eh?

    I added lime zest (along with the required lemon) and it gave it a tart punch, which was well received... I also, use quite a bit more than it was called in the receipe, so my cake stayed pretty moist (compare to other comments around the group). Like Faithy, sorry to hear that it was not as anticipating.

  3. Kudos for rolling up your sleeves and making this cake. Sometimes you have to face your (flour folding) fears head on! :o) I used the whisk beater too. Sorry it wasn't what you hoped for, but the recipe in the book is just a start. You can change it and substitute different fillings/jams or even make a layer cake (that's what I did). It's super flexible that way.

  4. Vicki,
    Beautiful! I love how you drizzled more chocolate..a great addition.

  5. Damn those HCB'ers and their posts and our indecisiveness - it makes for much less washing up when we aren't spurred into action!

    Your cake looks fab and good to know that agar works just as well as gelatin. Great tip on the apricot sauce. I agree the apricot needs to be amped up for those of us with less refined palates.

    And seriously, coming from the food/beverage industry, a good palate is a gift and something you can't learn in a book! Your granddaughter will go very far if she chooses to use it in her career. Food developer, Master of wine, brewer, vintner.