LuLu’s Yule Log

Time: 2 hours

And…. to my extreme pleasant surprise, my 16YO daughter made this amazing Yule Log on her own without prompting. It looked and tasted so perfect… one of the best I’ve had. Enjoy a classic, with a classic tune with a hot cup of coffee or tea…

Music Selection: Nat King Cole – The Christmas Song

Ingredients:

Cake:

¾ cup flour

1/3 cup cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground cloves (optional)

4 eggs, divided

¾ cup sugar

5 Tbsp sour cream

¼ cup butter, melted

1 tsp vanilla

Whipped Cream Filling

1 ¼ cups heavy cream

¾ cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1/8 tsp salt

8 oz soft (room temperature) cream cheese or mascarpone cheese

Ganache

8 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

1 cup heavy cream

Toppings: sugared cranberries, icing sugar for dusting, rosemary, roasted chestnuts

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Make sure the paper is cut to go about an inch over the sides of the pan.

In a large bowl, mix the flour, cocoa, baking powder, cloves and salt together.

In a separate large bowl, combine egg yolks. Mix to combine. Add the sour cream, melted butter and vanilla and whisk until combined.

Add the flour, gently and slowly to the egg mix. Set aside.

In another bowl, beat the egg whites with a mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently fold about 1/3 of the whipped egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Add the remaining egg whites and fold together until well combined.

Spread cake batter in the pan and ensure it is even. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven. Immediately lift the cake using the parchment paper and remove from pan.

While the cake is hot, use the parchment paper, to roll the cake from the shorter side. Set it aside with seam down. Let cool completely.

When the cake is completely cooled, and ready to be filled, make the filling.

Add heavy cream, sugar, vanilla and salt to large bowl. With electric beaters, mix until soft peaks. Add the cream cheese and whip until stiff peaks form.

Unroll the cake carefully. Spread the filling evenly over the cake. Then roll it back up without the parchment paper. Wrap it in plastic wrap with the seam side down and refrigerate for at least an hour.

When you are ready to decorate the cake, trim both ends so they are even and make the ganache. Add the chocolate to a medium sized bowl. Set aside. Heat the cream in the microwave until it just boils, then pour it over the chocolate. Allow the chocolate and cream to sit for a minute or two, then whisk until smooth. Let it cool to room temperature. Then with electric beaters, beat it until it is lighter in colour and thick enough to spread.

Use a long serrated knife to spread the ganache so it looks like rough wood. Decorate by dusting it with icing sugar (I just put a Tbsp of icing sugar in a sieve and give it a shake or two). You can also put sprigs of rosemary and cranberries. It also looks lovely beside some mandarin oranges that have leaves on or chestnuts. Enjoy with coffee, tea or a special boozy coffee drink.

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