Using a detailed recipe, step-by-step photos, and a complete video tutorial, let me show you how to make a lovely from-scratch yule log, also known as a Bûche De Noël in French. This traditional Christmas cake is decorated to resemble a log. My recipe starts with a cocoa flavored sponge cake that we’ll fill with cocoa hazelnut whipped cream. We’ll top it with chocolate ganache and a variety of fun optional garnishes including mushroom shaped meringues plus sugared cranberries and rosemary for a shimmery finishing touch. It’s show-stopping and elaborate, yet completely doable in your home kitchen!
Christmas is a time rich with tradition. Christmas cookies for Santa, ornaments and decorations, jingle bells and hot cocoa by the fire. For some and in European regions, it’s making a yule log cake, also known as a Bûche De Noël in French. I’ve tasted plenty during the holiday seasons, but hadn’t attempted a from-scratch recipe until this year. Initially overwhelmed by the process, I learned that it’s just like other at-home baking projects: fun quality time in the kitchen. Made even better with an extra dose of chocolate!
By the way, here’s another at-home baking project: a homemade gingerbread house with a free printable template for constructing it.
Tell Me About This Yule Log Cake
- Texture: Underneath all this festive decor, we have a soft and airy sponge cake. If you’ve tasted angel food cake before, you’ve had sponge cake. What’s interesting about sponge cake is that, unlike most cake recipes, it’s (usually) made without butter or oil. All of the magic happens with the eggs, a crucial ingredient in any sponge cake recipe. Note: I include a touch of oil in this cake for added moisture.
- Flavor: My Bûche De Noël includes a light cocoa cake, cocoa hazelnut whipped cream spiked with Frangelico (can definitely skip the booze if you want), and is topped with smooth chocolate ganache. Since ganache is incredibly rich, the other elements have lighter cocoa flavors. In fact, the cake tastes like a mug of hot cocoa.
- Ease: Advanced, but it’s a fun project to do by yourself or with your family. If you watch the video tutorial and read through the very detailed recipe prior to beginning, you’ll be set up for success.
- Assembly: If you’ve ever made pumpkin roll or any other jelly roll cake before, you’re familiar with this assembly. If you haven’t, it’s nothing to be nervous about as long as you have a solid recipe and the right equipment. (Tools list below.) Have fun with the garnishes and watch my video tutorial before beginning.
- Time: Yule log cakes aren’t anything you can rush; this recipe will take you all day. My advice is to concentrate on one element/step at a time. Make sure you’re following the cooling and chilling times closely. I don’t want you to ruin all your efforts by not letting portions of this recipe cool/thicken/set up properly.
Yule Log Christmas Cake Video Tutorial
4 Parts to This Yule Log Cake:
- Cocoa Sponge Cake
- Cocoa Hazelnut Whipped Cream
- Chocolate Ganache
Let’s review each part with step-by-step photos to guide us along.
Cocoa Sponge Cake
Start by whisking a few of the ingredients together. In terms of volume, there isn’t much: cake flour, cocoa powder, baking powder for added lift, and a little salt. Eggs are the cake’s main ingredients. Separate the eggs, then whip the egg whites with sugar into stiff peaks. Set those aside. Then whip the egg yolks with the remaining sugar, a little oil for moisture, and vanilla extract until thickened. You get more volume with room temperature eggs than cold eggs. Before beginning, set the eggs in a cup of warm water for 10 minutes to warm them up.
Below left: whipped egg whites + sugar. And below right: thickened egg yolk mixture.
Below left: In 2 additions, fold the fluffy egg whites into the egg yolk mixture. And below right: In 2 additions, fold in the dry ingredients. Like the finished cake, the cake batter is very light and airy.
Bake the cake roll in a 12×17 inch pan. So there’s plenty of cake for sectioning off and decorating, this a larger roll cake than my champagne cake roll and red velvet cake roll, both of which are baked in a 10×15 inch pan. Feel free to use any of my roll cake recipes as the base of your bûche de Noël, but know that if they’re baked in a smaller pan, you’ll have a smaller cake.
How to Shape a Yule Log
Shaping a cake roll is easier than it looks. There are two tricks:
- The 1st trick is to roll the cake up, without filling, while it’s still hot. Why? If the cake cools in the rolled shape, it will make rolling the cake with the filling inside EASIER.
- The 2nd trick is to roll the cake up with a clean kitchen towel or piece of parchment paper. Why? The warm cake will be sticky and stick to itself otherwise. Dust the towel or parchment paper with cocoa powder to prevent any chance of sticking!
These two tricks help guarantee no rips, no cracks, and no sticking.
Cocoa Hazelnut Whipped Cream
As the warm rolled cake cools down, make your whipped filling. Heavy cream is the base and we’ll sweeten it with a little confectioners’ sugar and flavor it with cocoa powder and hazelnut liqueur. Feel free to swap with the same amount of another flavored liqueur such as amaretto, Baileys Irish Cream, Kahlua, Grand Marnier, or other. You can also replace the alcohol with strong (cold or room temperature) coffee or 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
Or if you want to skip the cocoa and liqueur in the filling completely, make this whipped frosting instead.
Feel free to add finely chopped hazelnuts on top of the whipped filling. As you roll the cake, if it appears sticky and moist, dust with more cocoa powder.
Assembling the Yule Log
One end of the yule log cake is traditionally cut off and placed on the side or on top of the roll to resemble a branch. You can cut it at a diagonal angle as pictured below:
I have a separate and very detailed post showing you how to make chocolate ganache. Feel free to review it if you’re a beginner. You need 2 ingredients: pure chocolate and warmed heavy cream. The ganache is very thin right after you make it, so it’s imperative you let it cool down before using. Ganache thickens as it cools.
Spread the thickened ganache all over your shaped cake. This next part is easy– lightly drag a fork through the ganache so that it resembles tree bark.
Decorating Your Bûche De Noël/Yule Log
Your cake is nearly complete! Some garnish suggestions include:
- meringue mushrooms (recipe below)
- sugared cranberries & rosemary (recipe below)
- pinecones set on your platter
- herbs & edible flowers
- shaped marzipan
- chocolate shavings
- a dusting of confectioners’ sugar to resemble snow
I’m extremely detailed in these recipe directions, so don’t be overwhelmed. If I can do this, you can do this. See my make ahead instructions if you want to get prepared– there’s plenty of ways you can prep this yule log cake in advance. Take your time and enjoy the festive process. Wishing you a season of good cheer. We all need it!
Tools You Need:
- Electric Mixer (hand or stand) for cake batter, meringues, and filling.
- An egg separator is very helpful for the eggs.
- 12×17 inch baking pan for the cake.
- Parchment paper for lining the pan. I love these sheets.
- Offset spatula for spreading the whipped cream filling and ganache.
- Fine mesh strainer for dusting cocoa powder and confectioners’ sugar.
- Wilton 2A piping tip or any tip with around a 1/2 inch opening (plus a disposable or reusable piping bag) for meringue mushrooms.
- Thin kitchen/tea towel or parchment paper. You need either for rolling the cake, but I strongly recommend a towel because it’s better at helping to prevent cake cracks. It will get pretty dirty from the cocoa powder and cake, but stains should come right out in the wash especially if you rinse it with warm water first.
- Plus the usuals: mixing bowls, whisk, rubber spatula, cutting board, saucepan, etc
- Pictured: large white platter from Juliska’s Whitewash Berry & Thread line and square appetizer Christmas plates from Pottery Barn
Bûche De Noël (Yule Log)
- Prep Time: 8 hours (includes cranberries)
- Cook Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes (includes meringues)
- Total Time: 10 hours
- Yield: 10-12 slices
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: French
The meringue mushrooms and sugared cranberries & rosemary are completely optional garnishes. The recipe below includes both. For all make-ahead instructions, see recipe notes. I recommend watching the video tutorial above and reading the full recipe below before beginning. There’s a lot of cooling down, chilling, and other moving parts here!
Sugared Cranberries & Rosemary
- 1 cup (120g) fresh cranberries*
- 4–5 rosemary sprigs (optional)
- 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar, divided
- 1 cup (240ml) water
- 1 and 1/3 cups (157g) cake flour
- 2 Tablespoons (10g) unsweetened natural or dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 6 large eggs, separated and at room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar, divided
- 2 Tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil, canola oil, or melted coconut oil
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 Tablespoons (15g) unsweetened natural or dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1 large egg white, at room temperature
- less than 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar (about 1/16 teaspoon)
- pinch salt
- 2 Tablespoons (25g) granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon unsweetened natural or dutch-process cocoa powder (optional for dusting)
- 1 ounces (28g) semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
Cocoa Hazelnut Whipped Cream
- 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) cold heavy cream
- 2 Tablespoons (30ml) Frangelico liqueur
- 1/4 cup (30g) confectioners’ sugar
- 1 Tablespoon (5g) unsweetened natural or dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup (60g) finely chopped hazelnuts (optional)
- 6 ounces (170g) semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup (180ml) heavy cream
- Make the sugared cranberries and rosemary: If you want to decorate the cake with sugared cranberries and rosemary, start them the night before because they need to sit for several hours. Place cranberries and rosemary in a large bowl; set aside. In a medium saucepan, bring 1 cup of sugar and the water to a boil and whisk until the sugar has dissolved. Remove pan from the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Pour sugar syrup over the cranberries and rosemary and stir to combine. Let the cranberries and rosemary sit at room temperature or in the refrigerator (lightly covered) for 6 hours or overnight. You’ll notice the sugar syrup is quite thick after this amount of time. Drain the cranberries and rosemary from the syrup and pour 1 cup of sugar on top. Toss to coat. Pour the sugared cranberries and rosemary on a parchment paper or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet and let them dry for at least 2 hours at room temperature or in the refrigerator.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray a 12×17 inch baking pan with nonstick spray or grease with butter, so the parchment paper sticks. Then line it with parchment paper so the cake seamlessly releases. Spray or grease the parchment paper too. We want an extremely nonstick surface for this cake roll.
- Make the cake: Whisk the cake flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside until the next step. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat the egg whites and 1/2 cup (100g) sugar together on high speed for 4-5 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Transfer to another bowl. Using the same mixing bowl you just had the egg whites in (no need to clean it), add the egg yolks, remaining sugar, oil, and vanilla extract. Beat together on high speed for 3-4 minutes or until thickened and light in color.
- Add half of the whipped egg whites into the egg yolk mixture. Beat on low speed for 10 seconds. Repeat with remaining egg whites and beat on low for 10 seconds. Add half of the flour mixture and beat on low or fold with a rubber spatula until combined. Repeat with remaining flour mixture. Avoid over-mixing and deflating those egg whites. Batter will be very light.
- Spread batter evenly into prepared pan. Gently bang the pan on the counter a couple times to pop any air bubbles. Bake for 15-16 minutes or until the cake springs back when lightly poked with your finger. Cake will look a little bubbly on top when it’s done. That’s ok. Avoid over-baking cake because it will crack if over-baked. As the cake bakes, get started on the next step.
- Prepare to roll: As the cake bakes, place a piece of parchment paper (larger than the cake) or a thin kitchen/tea towel flat on the counter. (Note: I find a kitchen towel is better to help prevent cracking.) Using a fine mesh sieve, dust parchment/towel with 3 Tablespoons (15g) of cocoa powder. Once the cake comes out of the oven, quickly run a knife around the edges to loosen it. Immediately invert it onto the parchment/towel. Peel off the parchment paper that was on the bottom of the cake as it baked. Starting with the narrow end, begin tightly rolling the hot cake up with the parchment/towel. Do this slowly and gently. The cake will be warm. Allow the cake to cool completely rolled up in the parchment/towel. Feel free to place it in the refrigerator to speed it up, about 3 hours and up to 1 day.
- During this time, make the meringue mushrooms: Preheat oven to 200°F (93°C). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. In a completely clean residue-free large glass or metal mixing bowl, using a handheld mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg white, cream of tartar, and salt together on high speed until foamy, about 2 minutes– this is a small amount and the whisk on a stand mixer might not reach it, so whisk by hand until foamy if needed. With the mixer running on high speed, slowly add the sugar and beat until stiff glossy peaks form, about 2 more minutes. Snip off the end of a plastic bag or fit a round piping tip in a piping bag. I use and recommend Wilton 2A piping tip or any tip with around a 1/2 inch opening. Pipe quarter-sized circles (these will be the round mushroom tops) and 1-inch tall cones (these will be the stems). You will have enough meringue batter for about 16 mushrooms. I usually only make 8-12 and discard leftovers, but feel free to make all 16. Using a moistened finger (just a dab of water is fine), smooth down any peaks. If desired, lightly dust mushroom tops with cocoa powder using a fine mesh sieve. Bake for 2 hours. Do not open the oven as the meringues bake. Turn off the oven after 2 hours and let the meringues sit inside the cooling oven for 20 minutes. Remove meringues from the oven and cool completely. When they’re just about cool, melt the 1 ounce of chocolate in a double boiler or use the microwave. If using the microwave, melt in 15 second increments, stopping and stirring between each until melted and smooth. Cool for 5-10 minutes. (Easier to adhere mushrooms if the melted chocolate is a bit cool.) Once meringues have cooled, use a flat spatula to remove them from the baking sheets. Dot a bit of chocolate onto the center of the bottom of a mushroom top. Adhere a mushroom stem to it. Place back on the baking sheet to set. If stems or tops still have a little peak, scrape off with a knife or your spatula, as you see me do in the video above. Leaning them against the rim is helpful if they keep toppling over. Repeat with remaining tops and stems to form mushrooms. Let chocolate cool and harden, about 1 hour.
- Remove the cake roll from the refrigerator and allow to sit on the counter for a few minutes to warm up as you prepare the whipped cream.
- Make the whipped cream: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, Frangelico, confectioners’ sugar, and cocoa powder on medium-high speed until medium to stiff peaks form, about 2-3 minutes.
- Gently and very slowly unroll the cake. Spread whipped cream evenly on top, leaving about a 1/2 inch border around the cake. I like using a large or small offset spatula to spread. Sprinkle chopped hazelnuts on top. Gently roll the cake back up, without the parchment/towel this time. Roll it slowly. This part is messy. Carefully place on a cutting board. If the exterior of the cake looks moist, dust with a little cocoa powder. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days before shaping and topping with ganache.
- Make the ganache topping: Place chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan until it begins to simmer. (Do not let it come to a rapid boil– that’s too hot.) Pour over chocolate, then let it sit for 2-3 minutes to gently soften the chocolate. Slowly stir until completely combined and chocolate has melted. Ganache will be thin, so it has to thicken before using. Refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour to thicken.
- Remove rolled cake from the refrigerator. Diagonally slice a 3-4 inch section off one end. At this point, I usually place the cake on a serving platter. Place the angled side against a side of the roll, forming a branch. Slowly pour and spread thickened ganache all over the top and sides of cake. Feel free to leave the cut ends exposed (as you see in these photos) or spread ganache over the ends– there should be plenty of ganache to use. Use a fork to make textured lines resembling tree bark. Feel free to wipe the serving plate if ganache dripped all over.
- Decorate with meringue mushrooms, sugared cranberries and rosemary, and a dusting of confectioners’ sugar just before serving.
- Cover leftover cake and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Make Ahead Instructions: You can get started on the sugared cranberries and rosemary 1 day ahead of time. See step 1. You can make the meringue mushrooms in advance (step 7) as long as the weather is dry. (Humidity will ruin them.) Store at room temperature for up to 2-3 days before using. You can make the roll cake in advance (steps 2-6) because it must cool/chill completely before filling. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to 1 day. You can also refrigerate the filled cake roll (steps 9-10) for up to 2 days. You can make the whipped cream (step 9) 1 day in advance too. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. You can make the chocolate ganache topping (step 11) 1 day in advance, but if you let it sit for longer than 1 hour, it will thicken too much. If refrigerating for longer than 1 hour, cover it. To thin it out when ready to use, stir and warm it in a heat-proof bowl over a pan of simmering water for about 1 minute. Do not microwave it. Entire cake can be made 1-2 days in advance too. (Steps 1-12.) Cover and refrigerate until ready to decorate and serve. You can also freeze the assembled cake before or after adding the ganache. (Steps 1-11 or 12.) Cover and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before continuing with the recipe. It’s best to decorate with sugared cranberries, meringues, and a dusting of confectioners’ sugar (step 13) closest to serving.
- Cranberries: Use fresh cranberries, not frozen. The sugar syrup doesn’t coat evenly on the frozen berries, leaving you with plain shriveled cranberries.
- Frangelico Liqueur: This is a hazelnut liqueur. If desired, feel free to swap with the same amount of another flavored liqueur such as amaretto (almond), Baileys Irish Cream, Kahlua, Grand Marnier, or other. You can also replace the alcohol with strong (cold or room temperature) coffee or 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract or other flavor extract.
- Chocolate: You need 6 ounces of pure chocolate for the ganache topping and 1 ounce for the mushrooms. Pure baking chocolate is sold in 4 ounce bars, so 2 bars will be a little more than enough. I recommend Baker’s or Ghirardelli brands, both sold in 4 ounce bars in the baking aisle. You can use semi-sweet or bittersweet. If using white chocolate, reduce the amount of heavy cream in the ganache to 1/2 cup (120ml).
Keywords: yule log, Christmas cake, chocolate, hazelnut
Have you made it down this far? Let me show you how to make the optional garnishes.
I taught you how to make meringue cookies before. Meringues require precision, so feel free to visit that post if you need a little refresher. As instructed in step 7 above, pipe mushroom tops and stems using a round piping tip. Moisten your finger with water to smooth down any peaks. Bake in a relatively cool oven, then adhere the cooled pieces with melted chocolate.
These mushrooms look adorable on top of homemade dirt pudding too!
Sugared Cranberries & Rosemary
You need sugar, water, fresh cranberries, and rosemary. Frozen cranberries are not recommended here (although they’ll work for cranberry sauce, if you have a bag that needs using!) and feel free to skip the rosemary if you’d like. As instructed in step 1 above, make your sugar syrup on the stove. Pour over cranberries and rosemary and let it all soak for several hours. (Great to make these in advance.) Drain, then toss in sugar. Let it all dry out for about 2 hours before using as decor. You can also use this glitzy garnish on pumpkin pie, cranberry orange Bundt cake, gingerbread snack cake, too. I love the pop of color that cranberries
Reader Comments & Reviews
Hi! Could I replace the filling with cream cheese frosting like some of your other rolls? Or perhaps your Homemade Marshmallow Creme (Meringue Frosting)
Hi Alia, sure, you can use a filling from one of our other cake roll recipes!
I have made this cake for my family back home in Maryland, my family in Quebec Canada, and now i am making it for a third time for my family in Switzerland. We all love it so much!!! Thank you for sharing your talents with the world!
Can I fill the log with a chocolate mousse or would it not hold up well?
Hi Anne, You could! You’ll want to refrigerate the assembled cake filled with mousse.
This recipe was so worth the effort! It made our Christmas table so festive and was absolutely delicious. The directions are very clear. If you read them through ahead of time and give yourself plenty of time for all the steps, even a relatively novice baker can produce a stunning cake. I turned this into an extra challenge by making a lactose/dairy free version for my husband. I used coconut cream instead of heaving cream for the filling and ganache and it turned out great! Luckily the coconut flavor did not overpower the other flavors.
This recipe is so much fun. Excellent directions and explanation of techniques. It was my Christmas present to my family but also to myself! To say “I did it!’ The ganache is delicious and the whipped cream filling a dream. I will make this again! It disappeared… Making the meringue mushrooms and the candied cranberries and rosemary adds the magical touch. It’s not really a hard cake to master–follow Sally’s steps and make sure you have all the ingredients on hand and it will be a success. Only notes- I have a new oven and the cake was a tiny bit dry–I will give it only 8 minutes next time. And I’ll make more of the filling next year. Thank you Sally and team!!!
Going to try this yule log, my first! Can I use sweetened cocoa powder instead?
Hi Helma, we don’t recommend it. Unsweetened natural cocoa powder is best here. Hope you enjoy the recipe!
I wish I could give this 10 stars! I looked at the recipe and thought “maybe I can do this….” but mine looks almost exactly like yours and everyone was so impressed this was the most amazing thing I have ever made in my life. Thank you for such detailed instructions!
This is an excellent recipe. Followed it exactly and found that cooking times, temperatures and quantities were spot on (I use grams for the measurements). Substituted almond baking emulsion for the liqueur and the filling was excellent. The timing instructions were perfect and I had no breaks or cracks in the cake at any time during the rolling stages. Mushrooms were perfect first time and the odd little smear of chocolate on them was able to be blended in to make then look earthy. The sugar “lumps” left over from the cranberries made for perfect snow on the log and looked far better than the usually dusted confectionary sugar. It was the hit of the Christmas dinner.
I made this Yule Log 2 years ago and can’t remember how it turned out. I made it again for Christmas. It came out beautifully and it impressed everyone. The only problem was the cake came out dry. I was really disappointed. I didn’t read the reviews about reducing the baking time until now. I also used Kahlua in the frosting, which I think is better than the Bailey’s that I used the last time. I’m still giving this recipe 5 stars, because the recipe is detailed and easy to follow and the cake is a showstopper!
This turned out so well and is such a showstopper! I went with a vanilla whipped cream for the greatest contrast between the cake and the filling. Thanks for the recipe!
I tried this for the first time and it came out great. One crack, but the ganache covered it so no one even knew. It was stunning and tasted wonderful.
I have always wanted to make this cake for our Christmas table but been intimidated. Well, I decided to try it this year on Christmas Eve and it was perfect. I had everything in my pantry. I followed the recipe to a T except for Frangelico liquor which I replaced with orange blossom water which worked out really well. I also omitted the nuts due to nut-allergy.
The presentation was beautiful with so many details: the cranberry, the rosemary, the mushrooms, the bark. My family/friends took a while admiring the cake and nobody wanted to cut it up to eat! After we cut it up and ate, everyone raved. This cake was clearly the star!
Thank you Sally for the recipe and clear instructions.
(For some reason, the video does not show up on my computer but shows up on my phone only).
I have been eyeballing this recipe for years, but I never had the courage to try it. This year was finally my year and it went beautifully! I did it over four days, giving myself as much time to fix my mistakes as possible, but everything was perfect. Your instructions were fool-proof, as always. Thank you!
After reading over your recipe for weeks, I made this yesterday for Christmas. It really is a showstopper! The sugared cranberries and meringue mushrooms are such great decorations and the log itself tasted amazing. Thank you so much for your detailed instructions and guidance.
I made tis yesterday for a Chanukah / Christmas Eve dinner party. It was a very big hit!
Thank you Sally for the step-by-step instructions that broke this complicated cake into manageable steps. Rolling the cake wasn’t as hard as I’d expected, thanks to your tips about the towel. Since some of the guests can’t have alcohol, I added to the filling a couple teaspoons espresso dissolved in three tablespoons of the cream that I heated . The ganache was lovely to work with – I did add 1-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter to it, as that’s my go-to recipe. The sugar cranberries were so pretty and a nice tart contrast to the sweetness. (I could do without the iced rosemary next time – mine kind of wilted in the sugar syrup – but it did add a nice touch.) Next time I will make the merinque mushrooms – ran out of steam…
I read a lot of Buche de Noel recipes this week before attempting this project. This one was the clearest and most accessible. I really appreciate the short-cuts, such as not needing to wash or change beaters between egg whites and yolks. Thank you Sally!!!
what a great recipe. I am new to baking and I was able to do it! got a great swirl and very cute mushrooms.
I guess I wasn’t aware that even the tiniest amount of egg yolk in the egg white/sugar mixture could ruin the meringue entirely. Is there any way that it can be fixed?
You are amazing! You are my go to recipe girl!!! I am a baker, but this was my first buche de Noël and it can out perfectly!! I made whipped ganache to fill it with instead . Thank you so much!
Wonderful cake, the recipe was daunting but easy to follow. It turned out perfectly! I didn’t have Frangelico so I substituted with Kailua but kept the hazelnuts pieces and the combination of cocoa, coffee liquor and hazelnuts was excellent! I opted for some premade macarons from Trader Joe’s and turned them into mushrooms by dusting with cocoa powder and using chocolate batons for stems. If you want to skip the accessories steps but still want to keep the woodsy look, that worked great!
First time making a log and it came out amazing. Great instructions! Thank you!
So far, so good. Cake is baked and rolled. You forgot to mention the cocoa explosion that happened when I flipped the cake. Might be due to excessive use of cocoa! Just another kitchen adventure. Happy Holidays everyone!!!!
I just had the same coco explosion! It’s rolled & in the fridge to cool now. Fingers crossed! It smells fabulous so no matter how it looks my family will love it. Merry Christmas all!
So far so good! It’s rolled and in refrigerator. I did get that “cocoa explosion,” too!
Looking forward to finishing for New Year’s Day 2023!
Do you have high altitude adjustments?
Hi Marnie, we wish we could help, but we have no experience baking at high altitude. Some readers have found this chart helpful: https://www.kingarthurflour.com/learn/high-altitude-baking.html
Marnie, I haven’t tried this particular recipe at altitude (I’m in Denver), but this book will have you baking like a pro up here in no time: bhttps://www.amazon.com/Pie-Successful-Baking-High-Altitudes/dp/0060522585/ref=asc_df_0060522585/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312029893875&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=4936050891332777683&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9028770&hvtargid=pla-450211005531&psc=1
Recipe and directions were perfect. The first time I’ve ever tried a yule log and it came out perfect. Took about 2 hours make and decorate with proper cooling (put everything on the deck in -5 degree weather for 15 minutes). I had just enough ganache to cover the cake so I’d suggest making 1.5x to cover and mistakes if needed. I subbed amaretto in the filling and it was so so yummy..
All went well until I unrolled the cake and it cracked in two places. A rustic Buche de Noel this year!! Perhaps I should have left it longer to come to room temperature – it was the inner parts that cracked.
But the garnishes all worked out perfectly and the taste was superb. Thanks Sally, and a very happy Christmas to you and yours.
Mine cracked too!! I guess I skimmed over the part where you let it warm up 🙁
Hi! I just took the cake out of the fridge after letting it cool for three hours and noticed it looks very dry. Is that because the cake was in the fridge? Will the cake stay moist without the addition of a syrup? I know some Swiss rolls employ this method.
Thanks so much!
Hi Marwa, this question got buried in many other comments on the website during this time! I’m just seeing it now. The filling helps keep the cake quite moist. How did it taste?
I made this with AP flour, because that is what I had and it was fine. I hadn’t read the reviews so I didn’t reduce the baking time, but it wasn’t overcooked at 15 minutes. I opted for Baileys in the filling and did not add nuts. I suspect I didn’t roll it quite tight enough because it did get a bit of a flat side while chilling after filling. I didn’t have cranberries or rosemary for garnish but mushrooms and icing sugar were enough.
I love this recipe! I’ve been using it for the past few years, but my sister was recently diagnosed with celiac. If I did a 1-1 cake flour to GF Flour substitution would it turn out ok? Or would it be better to find a gf recipe? Thanks!
Hi Chloe! We haven’t tested this recipe with GF flour but please let us know how it goes if you do!
I just made this with 1:1 GF flour and it came out perfectly! The baking time was closer to 12 minutes. But the sponge came out perfectly.
As a professional pastry chef, I can tell you that with this type of cake, were you separate eggs to whip then fold in cake flour. You’re looking at an ideal cake to substitute 1:1 for GF flour. Your sister will love you for it and the cake will not suffer at all. I other words, if you have skeptics about GF stuff being not as good, you don’t need to tell them and they won’t know. Good Luck!!
I am celiac and used a flourless chocolate spongecake and it was very easy to work with. No cracking at all!
Thank you Sally!! I just finished this for my Kinder class Solstice Celebration tomorrow. When I showed the kids the pics from last night’s work, they said “It really looks like a log!!!”. Your deductions were spot on, and easy to follow. I can’t wait to try my cake!!!!
EXCELLENT!…your instructions are spot on. Thanks so much…it is such a delicious and impressive dessert.
This is a great recipe! My cake was a bit overcooked and I think I’ll make more filling next time but it was tasty and looked great. The meringue mushrooms were a really cute touch. I couldn’t find fresh cranberries but will add those next time for a more festive look.
Excellent and impressive dessert for the holidays. This was only my second time making a Bunche de Noel, and it came out terrific. I won the dessert contest hands down. I did bake the cake for less time-about 10 minutes total per other reviewers suggestion, it was perfect. It did take 5 hours in total, but worth every minute of it.
Phew! This was a quite a task but quite frankly, easy enough by following the directions as written. Like every recipe I’ve tried from this site, it came out beautifully! This cake was definitely the highlight of our family’s Christmas dinner. I left put the frangelico and nuts (allergies) but otherwise followed it to a Tee. The cake was light and fluffy, the cream was tasty and the ganache perfect! The sugared cranberries were actually quite tasty too. The mushrooms were the biggest challenge but after 3 tries, I got them and they light, delicate and tasty. I did cook the cake for 15 minutes but my over does seem to cook slower than most.
Overall it was light, moist and delicious and not too sweet. Definitely making this again