Master this roll cake from the Soviet era – the best quick party dessert (RECIPE)

Last minute guests for the holidays? Need a dessert? Roll cake is a quick and tasty lifesaver when you’re in a jam!

Last minute guests for the holidays? Need a dessert? Roll cake is a quick and tasty lifesaver when you’re in a jam!

Yulia Mulino
Is it possible to make a tasty and simple cake in a couple of hours? Try making this soft and tender roll cake with seasonal lemon curd.

As complicated as it looks, my mum and aunt claim that roll cake is the simplest way to bake something delicious and impressive for a party. I remember my mum baking it when I had school party evenings. The children had to bring some kind of dessert from home to share with classmates. 

During Perestroika, stores had a wider variety of sweets; for example, rolls filled with creamy raspberry jam and covered with chocolate icing were very popular. But all the best and most delicious things are baked at home. Right? 

So, what makes this roll cake so special? The original recipe includes basic ingredients: flour, eggs and sugar, as well as jam for the filling. Normally, in order to make the roll fluffy, the egg whites and yolks have to be beaten separately and combined thoroughly. My mum's recipe came from one of the tear-off calendars that suggested using condensed milk instead of sugar and did not require the eggs to be separated. This made preparation quicker.

My aunt came up with a special filling that included creamy sweet quark and lemon marmalade. She applied it to the warm roll dough and immediately rolled it. The marmalade melted a little and the quark penetrated better into the porous dough. After an hour, the cake was ready to serve.

When making my roll cake, I combined the classic recipe with the one from the calendar. However, in local shops it's not easy to find condensed milk and marmalade of the right consistency (soft chunks coated in sugar). So, I used lemon curd as the filling and sugar for the batter.

I found some lemon marmalade, but it's not what's suitable for the filling; while it turned out to be too sticky, it made a lovely decoration.



  • Flour - 120 g
  • Sugar - 100 gr
  • Eggs - 3 pcs.
  • Milk - 5 tablespoons
  • Salt - a pinch


  • Cream cheese - 400 gr
  • Castor sugar - 50 gr
  • Lemon curd - 3-4 tablespoons.


1. Preheat the oven to 180° C. Beat the eggs and sugar for about 6 minutes until they have lightened and increased in volume.

2. Add milk and whisk again.

3. Gently incorporate the flour and salt using a spatula so as not to ruin the dough’s airy structure.

4. Place the dough in a 1-cm layer on baking paper. Bake the dough for 13 to 15 minutes. Do not open the oven until the dough is ready, otherwise it may go flat.

5. Trim the edges when warm.

6. Cover the dough with another paper; turn it over, remove the first paper.

7. Make a roll. Let it cool.

8. Mix the cream cheese and sugar for the cream.

9. When the dough has cooled, roll it out and apply the lemon curd and cream cheese on top. Leave some cream for decoration.

10. Roll it up again and leave in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

11. Decorate the roll with the cream, lemon and lemon marmalade.

12. Enjoy!

READ MORE: Stolychny cake: Soviet classics with a festive interpretation (RECIPE)

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