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Bûche de Noël

My family loves making this for Christmas.  I’m sharing the recipe here (with proper credit and linkage below) because we all know how sites and pages online tend to disappear forever.  I hope you enjoy this as much as we do.

Preparation time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Adapted from “The Way To Cook.”

Cake:

3 large eggs, separated

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup cake flour, sifted

3 tablespoons butter, melted, cooled

Confectioners’ sugar

Frosting/filling:

2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted

1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted

1 tablespoon instant espresso coffee powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Confectioners’ sugar

1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. For cake, beat egg yolks in bowl of electric mixer, 1 minute. Gradually add 1/2 cup of the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, with motor running, until mixture thickens, turns pale yellow and forms a ribbon off beaters, about 3 minutes. Beat in vanilla.

2. Beat egg whites in separate bowl until foamy. Add cream of tartar and salt; beat until soft peaks form. Beat in remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form.

3. Stir 1/4 of whites into yolk mixture to lighten mixture. Fold in 1/3 of remaining whites until combined; fold in 1/4 cup of the flour. Continue adding, alternating egg whites and flour, ending with flour. Fold in cooled butter.

4. Grease jellyroll pan, line with wax paper and grease wax paper. Pour batter into pan. Bang pan against counter once to remove air pockets. Bake until lightly colored and top is springy to the touch, about 10 minutes.

5. Sprinkle cake with confectioners’ sugar. Immediately turn out onto damp kitchen towel lined with wax paper. Remove wax paper from bottom of cake; sprinkle bottom side of cake with confectioners’ sugar. Cut 1/4 inch of the cake off edges. Roll up unfrosted cake in wax paper-lined towel. Cool completely.

6. For frosting, beat confectioners’ sugar and butter in bowl of electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add chocolate, coffee powder and vanilla; beat until smooth.

7. Unroll cake; spread with 1/2 of the frosting. Roll cake up; place seam side down on serving plate. Cut 1 diagonal slice off each end, making one larger than the other. Spread diagonal end of each slice with frosting; place on log for “branches.” Frost cake and sides of branches with frosting; leave ends unfrosted. Run fork along log to create “bark.” Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar for “snow.”

From:  Chicago Tribune

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