Sunday, September 26, 2010

Swiss Roll Bombe

Wow. It has been a loooong time. Ready for my sob story? Because here it comes...
Over the last few months I've come to realize how precious is this thing that we call time. Time! What a sneaky thing you are. A few months ago I had so much of you -- almost too much. It was March and I had an offer for a job that didn't start until the end of August. I had 6 whole months to relish California while I slowly finished up my thesis. And now look at me...I barely have enough of you to sit down and write a post.

The last few months have been some of the craziest in my life. I went from being a graduate student on the verge of completely losing all motivation to an assistant professor. Sounds like a big change, but honestly, I don't think much has really changed. Sure, I'm in a different location, with a (dare I say it) real job, and a real (non-stipend) salary. But inside, I am still the same grad student -- stressing over deadlines, working late hours, and trying to hold on to every last bit of motivation I can find. It's been a challenge to say the least.

The hardest part is being away from those I love. I am in the middle of the country (literally) thousands of miles from anyone I love and sometimes I can't help but wonder if it's really worth it. Honestly, I'm still not sure. But this is what I've got myself into, so I might as well savor it while I've got it.

OK, enough rambling. I'm ready to talk food. I'm almost embarrassed to post this, but I'll do it anyway. This was supposed to be my submission for some past Daring Bakers challenge -- so long ago, I don't even remember the month, and right now I'm too lazy to look it up. The challenge was to create a Swiss bombe: basically cake-covered ice cream. That's right: Cake. And. Ice Cream. Together. Dessert doesn't get much better than this.

The swiss roll cake was really fantastic. Of course mine looked less than perfect, but the taste was phenomenal. Light and moist with the perfect amount of sweetness. I made two flavors of ice cream: vanilla bean and french vanilla (sorry, forgot which recipes I used), and added a layer of chocolate ganache. I made a mini bombe and a deconstructed version. Personally, I liked the deconstructed version better. But that's just me sometimes: disorganized and random (sshh...don't tell my students).

I also want to thank all my readers who left me the most endearing comments on my last post. After not blogging for so many months, I missed it terribly, and now I know why. Reading your comments and knowing that someone out there actually (somewhat?) cares about what's going on in my kitchen means so much to me. Seriously, your comments really touched me.
I really hope to be blogging regularly again soon.

Here are the recipes for the cake and ganache.


  1. Ms. meanie, It's so good to see your name pop up again in my dashboard. First of all, congratulations on taking such a huge leap. A move + a new job...that's stressful to say the least. But it also proves how brave you are, and I have to say inspirational as well. I'm not having any luck (yet) with my Dutch Harbor search but if you can do it, so can I. And don't feel alone. Your friends and family may be far away but I'm sure you'll make new friends soon. Plus your online buddies will always be here. :D

    As for the bombe, Wow! I forgot how amazing this dessert was. I love that you made a mini-deconstructed version too! Great work. ♥

  2. Hi, welcome back! You just made my day with this new post, I've missed your postings so much. The cake, of course, looks fabulous, and I'm sure it made you feel better for a little while (assuming you made it AFTER moving away from California).
    Leaving CA just isn't easy, because it's so awesome there. But I survived, so you might have a chance as well ;) Good luck with your new job and everything. I'm sure it's worth it!!!

  3. Hey Ms. Meanie! Gosh, I hope you start to feel your move was worth it. You know, sometimes I think working and making a paycheck is a way of loving your family just like being with them is. I mean, it's a way of showing your parents and loved ones that you can take care of yourself, which helps them to feel secure & such. Not being close by is a real down fall though-no doubt. I'm sure you will figure out what to do with time.
    I'm about to live somewhere I don't really want to btw. I'm just going to try to be present in every moment and enjoy by eating cake (smile).
    p.s. Me wants a piece of this roll;)

  4. I think it's very very good.

  5. Great to see you post again! Your bombe is the bomb! It looks delicious.

  6. Oh babe, can I tell you how many times I have stopped back here waiting to see if you'd posted! Many. Many many many. I miss you MUCHO! But take your time if you need to. I don't want you getting all stressed out! The life of an assistant professor is hard. But I know you can do it. And this swiss cake bombe aka heaven looks awesome!

  7. I, like you, know all too well how precious "time," T-I-M-E, Time is. A year ago today, I was a completel non-functioning agoraphobic. If you're not familiar with the illness, it's basically the most severe form of social phobia. I was a prisoner in my home, not having left, all but five months, for 13 YEARS! 13 years of my time completely immured, captive, prisoner in my own home. Today, not only am I "free," but I'm also relishing the time I have. So short, but so precious.

    In life, we waste the time we need. We lose the time we don't have. But what's most important, is that we spend the time we do have--the right now-- doing our best to make it matter, with every second we can spare from every space we can take it.

    I missed you! I'm so glad to have you back. Your dessert, despite what you say, is GORGEOUS! And I can only imagine how delicious it must have tasted...all those months ago. =)

  8. Have missed you!

    And all I can say is you HAVE a job. That's more than a lot of people can say. And one must go where the job matter how far away from loved ones. My kids are scattered, but we use Skype. And talk and see each other every day that way.

    Love your bombed bombe!

  9. Hey Ms. Meanie! I know you're super busy, but I put a really funny video on my blog. It's only like 3 minutes long. I thought you might would like it...maybe?

  10. Wow this looks amazing! I want a taste :)

  11. Whenever you make a new item, I feel to taste it now. Swiss roll Bombe is really a bomb.

  12. I sat that DB challenge out since I was so busy, and I'm not half as busy as you sound! I'm so glad you're back, and hope you end up loving where you are - The middle of the country isn't all bad :). Tho, I'd probably be spoiled on California if I ever had lived there!

  13. So glad to see you back! I've had a hectic summer of moving and working away from home, but I just moved at the beginning of the month and hope to be settled for a bit. I didn't get the Swiss roll bombe made, and I'm not half as busy as you! It looks fantastic, and makes me long for summer, but just a bit, as I love the red leaves and great fall weather. See you here again soon, I hope!

  14. Hey welcome back! As usual brilliant pics!

  15. heavenly. also, stellar. and one more--extraordinary. a job well done!