Bûche de Noël
Bûche de Noël
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3/4 cups sifted cake-and-pastry flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 5 eggs
- 3/4 cups white sugar, divided into 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup
- 1 tablespoon icing sugar
- 1 cup (227g) butter, softened
- 1/3 cup whipping cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups icing sugar
- 4 oz unsweetened chocolate melted and cooled
- Bay Leaves
- Anything else pretty and edible – I’d love to see it with red currants, and lots of people use rosemary for greenery, or green tea powder to make the log look mossy.
- a large-ish baking sheet with a rim – mine is 18.5″ x 12″, but yours doesn’t have to be that big – just keep an eye on it as it bakes!
- parchment paper
- a whisk or electric mixer (seriously, it’s possible with a whisk – I’ve done it! – but it’s like, 5x faster and easier with an electric mixer)
- Many bowls – like, so many bowls. At least 4 bowls, 5 if you don’t have time/space to wash up between making cake and making icing.
- a clean tea towel
- Cake: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together cake-and-pastry flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
- In a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, heat milk with butter until melted. Remove pan from heat, leaving bowl on top; cover to keep warm.
- Separate 3 of the eggs, dropping yolks and whites into separate large bowls.
- Beat egg whites until foamy; beat in 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar, about 1 tbsp at a time, until soft peaks form.
- Beat together egg yolks and remaining eggs and 1/2 cup granulated sugar until pale and thick enough that batter leaves ribbons on surface when beaters are lifted, about 5 minutes.
- Fold in one-third of the whites; fold in remaining whites. Do not mix entirely.
- Sift flour mixture over top; fold in until just combined.
- Pour in milk mixture; fold in until blended. do not over-mix.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Spread in a 15- x 10-inch parchment paper–lined rimmed baking sheet. It’s okay if the corners aren’t perfect; icing covers a multitude of flaws.
- Bake in 350°F (180°C) oven until golden and cake springs back when lightly touched, 12-15 minutes. This is a great time to wash some bowls, so that you have one ready to make the icing.
- dust your clean tea towel with 1 teaspoon icing sugar.
- Loosen edges with knife; you’re really just using the knife to lift the crisp edges of the cake away from the paper. Invert onto icing-sugar-dusted tea towel.
- Before the cake cools, carefully peel off paper. Working fairly quickly, and starting at a short side, gently roll up cake in a clean tea towel; let cool on rack. You can wrap in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 24 hours.
- Icing: Melt chocolate and allow to cool.
- In bowl, beat butter until fluffy; gradually beat in whipping cream, then vanilla.
- Beat in icing sugar, 1 cup at a time.
- Beat in melted unsweetened chocolate until fluffy.
- Unroll cake; if you’d like to make a branch, cut a 2″ strip off of the long side of the cake.
- Spread each piece with 1-1/2 cups of the icing.
- Reroll main log without towel; place, seam side down, on platter.
- Reroll side branch without towel; place seam side down and cut a 45 degree angle off of one end. Use icing to ‘glue’ the branch to the main log.
- Spread remaining icing all over log.
- Decorate as desired.
- Refrigerate until cold.
You have inspired me once again! Making this for the first time for our Christmas dinner.