Christmas cake

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Christmas cake

Are you in need of a show-stopping dessert centerpiece for your holiday table? Let us introduce you to the bûche de Noël. This yule log cake looks and tastes incredibly impressive, so your guests will think you spent all day in the kitchen — but really, this cake is ready in just an hour and a half. (Don’t worry, we won’t tell).

“My buche de noel. The bark is melted mint chocolate. The pinecone and mushrooms are made with fondant and cocoa.”.kaolinite

What Is a Bûche de Noël?

A bûche de Noël is a sponge cake that is typically served around Christmastime. It’s believed to have originated in France during the 19th century.

The cake is filled with frosting and rolled to look like a log. It can also be decorated with frosting to make it more log-like or a simple dusting of confectioners’ sugar to resemble snow on a log.

What is the Tradition of Bûche de Noël?

The bûche de Noël is meant to symbolize the yule log, which families burned on Christmas Eve. The yule log represents the new year to come and is said to bring the family good luck.

How to Pronounce Bûche de Noël

This dessert’s name is pronounced “BOO-sh de No-elle.”

What Does Bûche de Noël Mean?

Bûche de Noël literally translates to “log of Christmas.”

How to Make Bûche de Noël

This cake may seem intimidating, but it’s just like any other Swiss roll. You’ll find the full, step-by-step recipe and instructions below — but here’s what you can expect when you make this bûche de Noël:
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Make the Chocolate Whipped Cream

Whip the cream, confectioners’ sugar, cocoa, and vanilla until peaks form. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Make the Cake Batter

Beat the egg yolks and sugar until the yolks are pale. Add the cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt. In a separate bowl, whip egg yolks until soft peaks form, then add the sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold the yolk mixture into the egg white mixture. Spread the batter onto a parchment-lined jelly roll pan.

Bake and Roll

Bake until the cake springs back when touched, then turn it out on a confectioners’ sugar-coated dish towel. Roll the cake up with the towel and let it cool for 30 minutes.

Fill the Cake

Unroll the cooled cake and fill it with chocolate whipped cream. Roll it back up and refrigerate. Dust with confectioners’ sugar or decorate the cake before serving.

Learn more: How to Make Bûche de Noël With Smart Cookie

How to Decorate Bûche de Noël

This recipe calls for a simple dusting of confectioners’ sugar over the yule log cake, but you can decorate your bûche de Noël more elaborately if you like. Try icing the cake with chocolate ganache for a more log-like appearance. You can also garnish the cake with chocolate curls, candied cranberries, rosemary, and marzipan shapes (like mushrooms).

How to Store Bûche de Noël

Store bûche de Noël covered in the fridge until you’re ready to serve. It will stay fresh for up to five days.

Can You Freeze Bûche de Noël?

Yes, bûche de Noël can be made ahead of time and frozen. Wrap the completely cooled cake (without the confectioners’ sugar or other decorations) in a layer of storage wrap then a layer of aluminum foil. Freeze for up to three months. Defrost in the fridge overnight, then decorate as desired.
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Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

“Made this for our Christmas dinner. It turned out perfectly. I garnished it with the Meringue Mushrooms. We used to buy it from the local French patisserie for $35. Won’t have to do that again,” says Elizabeth Bobe.

“I found this recipe at least 5 years ago & I have made it every Christmas since. It’s delicious. I buy fondant and make the mushrooms, & holly leaves & berries. It has become a tradition to make this cake. It also has no flour which is great for my daughter-in-law who is gluten free. I highly recommend this cake,” according to Martina916.

“Best bûche de Noël recipe I have ever tasted or made. The cake is light and tasty and the mousse-like filling is very good,” raves love2cook. “I also added a chocolate frosting that I have put on my bûche de Noëls in the past that was very chocolatey and made it even more tasty and beautiful. These things are usually prettier than they are tasty, but this one was the exception.”

Editorial contributions by Bailey Fink

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