I made this yule log cake for Nick’s holiday party last week. My sweets have a bit of reputation at his office. Whenever I bake too much or too often, I’ll send Nick to work with the surplus. For better or for worse, people tend to expect me to show up with treats. So I had to bake something for the party and I decided on a traditional Christmas yule log cake with meringue mushrooms. It’s a bit miraculous how pretty it turned out because, one I’d never made a rolled cake before and two I didn’t have the right pan. I’ve mentioned how I have a problem thoroughly reading directions and ingredients before I start to bake. On this occasion I didn’t realize the cake required a specific swiss roll tin. So I fashioned one out of foil. Amazingly, that worked! The meringue mushrooms were also a first, but I was feeling particularly confident having just successfully made macarons. They too turned out well. A bit stout but yummy. All and all it was a pretty, moist, tasty cake, that’s gluten-free! Another baked good for my mama. Hooray!
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
- 6 large eggs, separated
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped in small pieces
- 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
for the Chocolate Whipped Cream
- 2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoon granulated white sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place the oven rack in the center of the oven. Butter, or spray with a non stick vegetable spray, a 17 x 12 inch baking pan. (Or make one out of tin foil) Line the pan with parchment paper and then butter and flour the parchment paper. While the eggs are still cold, separate the eggs, placing the whites in one bowl and the yolks in another. Cover and bring to room temperature. Meanwhile melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove from heat and cool. In a large bowl beat the egg yolks and 1/4 cup of sugar until light and fluffy. (5 min) Beat in the vanilla extract. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add the melted chocolate and beat just to combine. In a clean mixing bowl beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and beat at medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar until stiff peaks form. Gently fold a small amount of the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture using a rubber spatula or whisk. Fold in the remaining whites just until incorporated. Don't over mix! Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake until the cake is puffed, has lost its shine, and springs back when gently pressed, about 15 -17 minutes. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Cover the cake with a clean, slightly damp towel.
For the Chocolate Whipped Cream: In a large mixing bowl place the whipping cream, vanilla extract, sugar, and cocoa powder and stir to combine. Beat the mixture until stiff peaks form. Chill whipped cream. Once the cake has cooled, spread with the cream, reserving about ⅓ to cover cake, and then gently roll the cake, peeling off the parchment paper as you roll. Trim one end of the cake at an angle and set it aside. Then place the cake, seam side down, on your serving platter. Take the slice of reserved cake and attach it to the side of the cake. Cover the cake in reserved whipped cream and give it texture using a fork. Decorate with meringue mushrooms and green coconut. Serve and enjoy! (Original)