Snozzcumber cake

by Juliet Sear

In honour of Roald Dahl day, expert baker Juliet Sear recreates the BFG’s snozzcumber


Lemon and poppy seed roulade:
5 medium eggs, separated
240g golden caster sugar
Zest 2 lemons
2 tbsp vegetable oil
160g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp poppy seeds

Lemon curd frosting:
250g unsalted butter, softened
½ tsp green food colouring gel
500g icing sugar
125g good quality lemon curd
100g full fat cream cheese, at room temperature

Decorative elements:
2 tbsp desiccated coconut
1 heaped tsp black liquorice food colouring gel
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
2 tsp poppy seeds


Line a greased 15x10" shallow baking tray with baking parchment and grease the parchment interior too.

Beat the egg yolks until pale and creamy, then gradually add 80g of the sugar, beating well so the yolks are nice and pale and fluffy. Add the zest and the oil and gently stir in.

In another clean metal bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 160g sugar a little at a time, beating until stiff glossy peaks form and the sugar has dissolved.

Fold this meringue mix into the beaten egg yolk mixture. Combine the flour and baking powder then gently fold this into the mixture. Lastly add the poppy seeds and gently fold in.

Pour into the prepared baking tray and bake for approx 10-12mins on 160C fan until just baked and the cake is springy. Remove and cool for a few mins.

Dust a new piece of greaseproof paper liberally with additional caster sugar, turn out the slab of cake onto it and gently peel the paper off the bottom of the cake. Score a line with a knife down the length of the cake, about 5cm in from the edge so you can use this to help bend the cake as you first start to roll it up. Roll the cake tightly over, so you have a 15", long thin swiss roll. Leave to cool in the paper.

While it cools, make the frosting. Beat the softened butter, green colouring and icing sugar in a stand mixer for 2 mins on high until creamy and fluffy. Turn the mixer down and add the lemon curd. Mix gently to combine, then add the cream cheese and mix on slow until combined.

To decorate, gently unroll the cake and spread with a thin layer of the frosting, then roll the cake back up tightly. Place on a cake board or tray with the seam side down. Using a palette knife, generously spread the frosting over the cake in long strokes to start making the stripy white covering.

When covered, dust all over with some coconut to texturise the snozzcumber and start to make it look ‘gross’. Add the black food colouring to the remaining frosting and beat. Place in a piping bag and pipe black lines, roughly so it looks a bit bumpy, over the length to create stripes.

Add some extra grossness to the snozzcumber by accessorizing the black parts with poppy seeds and pumpkin seeds poking up out of the snozzcumber. It should look quite gnarly and rough.

Cut into thin slices to serve. It is a chewy cake, a cross between a meringue and sponge.

Recipe: Juliet Sear