Buttermilk biscuit dough, filled with a roasted rhubarb and strawberry filling and rolled up and baked to flaky, golden goodness.
I spotted this recipe recently and was immediately intrigued by the idea of a biscuit jelly roll. And rhubarb filled, at that! And since my rhubarb was ready for harvesting at exactly that moment, it was meant to be.
So what we have here is a basic buttermilk biscuit dough, that is rolled into a rectangle and then simply folded like a letter. So perhaps this one is a bit more of a jelly fold, than a roll, but you get the idea :)
Encased inside is a lovely roasted rhubarb filling, with just a handful of strawberries added to the mix to bring an extra bit of sweetness and as a flavour foil for the rhubarb.
Before baking, the biscuit roll gets a brushing of buttermilk and a generous sprinkling of turbinado sugar. Once baked, the outside of this biscuit roll delivers the most lovely and crisp outside, that shatters when cut, like a pastry. And of course, inside is … well, a biscuit with jam.
Ingredient Notes for Roasted Rhubarb Buttermilk Biscuit Jelly Roll
Rhubarb: I used fresh rhubarb and have yet to try this with frozen rhubarb. My thoughts are that frozen rhubarb should work just fine, as it will be roasted. I suspect the roasting time in the oven would be somewhat longer to allow the extra moisture to cook off.
You’ll want to roast the rhubarb until it is soft and almost all the liquid has cooked off, but before the rhubarb begins to brown or scorch at all. It should resemble stewed rhubarb. Fresh rhubarb in my oven took about 45 minutes to get to that point. For frozen, just keep an eye on it and allow to cook to that point, however long that takes.
Strawberries: You will just need 4-5 large strawberries here. If you prefer, you could use raspberries. About a rounded cup of raspberries should work. If you’d rather not use any berries (only rhubarb), simply increase the amount of rhubarb to about 4 cups.
Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk, you can use regular milk or even cream or half and half. You can make a mock buttermilk by adding 2 tsp of lemon juice or white vinegar to 3/4 cup of regular milk and letting it stand about 10 minutes before using. To keep it cold for the biscuit making, place in the refrigerator while standing.
I haven’t tested this recipe with nut or soy milks, but I have no reason to believe it wouldn’t work. The quantity you will need to add may vary slightly, so add a bit at a time and as much as necessary in that case.
Salt: The recipe specifies kosher salt. The more coarse grains of kosher salt don’t dissolve completely during baking, so they leave behind a subtle, but distinct salty note here and there, that is a great balance with the sweet and fruit. If you don’t have kosher salt, use slightly less fine salt, about 1/2 tsp.
Sugar: I used regular white sugar for the biscuit dough, but went with turbinado sugar for the topping. Regular white sugar is fine for the topping, as well as a coarse sanding sugar. Use whichever you prefer.
Flour: I have not tried this recipe with gluten free flour. If you have had success with 1 for 1 gluten free flour for biscuits before, there is no reason it won’t work here.
Cook’s Notes for Roasted Rhubarb Buttermilk Biscuit Jelly Roll
The roasted rhubarb mixture can be made ahead and refrigerated up to 5 days. If using immediately, be sure to allow to cool completely and ideally, refrigerate a bit so it is cool, to avoid melting the butter in the biscuit dough before baking.
As with most biscuits, it is important to use both cold buttermilk and cold butter. You’ll want to work fairly quickly and have only as much contact between your hands and the dough as necessary, as your warm hands will begin to soften the butter. It is “ready” when the mixture is coarse, with only pea-sized pieces of butter.
After removing the dough to a well-floured surface, I used a bench scraper to fold the dough over and lightly press it down on itself. You don’t want to over-work it, but you do want to make sure it is evenly moist and not too crumbly.
If you find the dough difficult to roll, gather it up, wrap tightly and refrigerate for 15-20 minutes, then try again. As a dusting of flour as needed, both underneath and on top, if the dough seems sticky.
Be sure to check the bake at about 25 minutes in and if the top seems dark enough already, lay a sheet of aluminum foil loosely over-top, then continue baking to closer to the 35-40 minutes mark.
Adapted from a Martha Stewart Recipe
Making Roasted Rhubarb Buttermilk Biscuit Jelly Roll in Pictures: Step by Step
Roasted Rhubarb Buttermilk Biscuit Jelly Roll
- 3 cups rhubarb fresh or frozen, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 1/2 cups strawberries quartered, about 5 large strawberries
- 1/3 cup granulated white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
- 2 cups all-purpose flour plus more for dusting
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 2 Tbsp granulated white sugar
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt or about 1/2 tsp fine salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter cold, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3/4 cup buttermilk cold
Topping before baking:
- 2 Tbsp buttermilk for brushing
- 2 Tbsp sugar coarse sanding or turbinado or regular white sugar
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a large bowl, toss the prepared rhubarb and strawberries with 1/3 cup white sugar and the vanilla. Spread in a single layer onto a baking sheet. Bake stirring 2-3 times, until juices have thickened but are not beginning to brown, about 45-50 minutes (may take longer if starting with frozen rhubarb). You should have about 1 cup of roasted fruit. Immediately remove roasted fruit to a bowl and allow to cool completely before proceeding and ideally, cover and pop the bowl of fruit in the fridge for a bit, so it will be cold when using. *Roasted fruit can be made several days ahead and refrigerated.
- Increase oven temperature to 400F. Prepare a baking pan with a sheet of parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, the remaining 2 Tbsp white sugar and the salt. Add the cubed, cold butter to the mixture and working quickly, press the butter between your fingers and into the flour mixture, until the mix is even, with about pea-sized pieces of butter. Add the cold buttermilk. Using a for, stir the mixture just until it comes together.
- Turn dough out onto a floured work surface and gather into a rough round. Using a bench scraper or spatula, fold the edges up and over the round, pressing down slightly. Repeat a few times, until the dough seems evenly moist and not crumbly or sticky (if sticky, dust with a bit more flour).
- Dust work flour with flour (especially underneath) and lightly on top of the dough. Using a rolling pin, roll dough out to an 8x10-inch rectangle, about 1/2-inch thick.
- With the shorter, 8-inch edge closest to you, spread cooled rhubarb mixture over dough, spreading right to the edges. Fold the bottom up 1/3 of the way, then fold the top down to cover the bottom, making a rectangle. Gently transfer to prepared, parchment lined baking sheet. Brush the top of the dough with buttermilk, then sprinkle top generously with coarse sanding sugar, turbinado sugar or white sugar.
- Baking until puffed and golden brown, about 35-40 minutes. *Check bake at about 25 minutes and if top is dark enough, lay a sheet of aluminum foil loosely over-top and continue baking. It may look done on the outside, but the inside needs more time to cook.
- Remove from oven and immediately transfer to a cooling rack on the parchment. After a few minutes, you can slice the parchment out from underneath. Allow to cool about 30 minutes before serving.