December 14, 2009

Yule Log (aka Bûche de Noël)


Nothing screams Christmas and the holidays like a Yule Log or Bûche de Noël.  It was created by Parisian pastry chefs in the 19th century and is meant to resemble one of the logs you might burn in your fireplace on a cold winter's night.  I tell you, only  the Frenchies would think  to make a dessert that's supposed to look like a piece of firewood.   

Traditionally the cake is made of chocolate sponge cake and some type of filling and then rolled up in a long cylinder.  Both ends of the cylinder are cut off; one end is placed on the side of the log and the other is put on top to look like a stump.  The entire cake is then covered in chocolate frosting and decorated with meringue mushrooms.

For this cake I filled it with vanilla swiss meringue buttercream and  the frosting is dark chocolate ganache.  I didn't have the patience to make the mushrooms out of meringue since the humidity in San Francisco normally makes them too soft.  Instead I piped the mushrooms out of some leftover vanilla buttercream and it worked great.

Call it blasphemous, but doesn't the finished cake look like a big ol' Hostess Ho Ho?  Not sure that the French would appreciate that comparison..hahaha!

Joyeux Noël mes amis!

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