Daring Bakers: This is the Way I Roll.
This month's Daring Bakers challenge was the making of a Yule Log, or a Bûche de Noël; something I'd always wanted to make but never seemed to find the time to do so.
As it turned out, I barely had time for it, even when scheduled!
We've had a couple rounds of coughs and colds in our house, and general busyness, so much so that even my Christmas baking got pushed to the last minute (I'm not kidding: I'll still be baking tomorrow).
And after reading various horror stories from other DB'ers regarding the buttercream or meringue recipes, I envisioned an ending where I'm carted off in a straight jacket, muttering something or other about not curdling the eggs.
(Matt's funny: he just said, 'that's what that dessert is! It's not a log roll, it's a Blog Roll')
Much to my delight and surprise, however, each step of the log came together beautifully. I've had some experience rolling cakes, ever since I began making pumpkin rolls for Christmas. The genoise was absolute perfection, and rolled like a dream. As allowed, I made my cake base chocolate, adding some seriously dark cocoa powder to the batter.
The buttercream, the source of many a pulled hair by my fellow Daring Bakers, quickly achieved that smooth and creamy texture. As our family rather strongly dislikes coffee, and feels similarly about alcohol, I flavored the buttercream with a very dark (melted) chocolate and mint extract. It was so good, I kept spilling some of it just so I could have a taste!
As for the filling, I kept it simple. Sweetened whipped cream, flavored with our homemade mint extract. It's subtle, but it's there.
I used a small off-set spatula to achieve the 'bark' texture for the log. I really liked the way it came out.
And then there were the mushrooms!
I'd been worried: rain was in the forecast for the following day, and I knew if I didn't get the mushrooms made last night, I'd be out of luck. So, I made the meringue, piped away, and, uh...forgot to dust them with cocoa powder. Ugh.
Put them in the oven for an hour and...not done. Checked them ten minutes later; still not done. About an hour later, and I managed to find four 'caps' and a few 'stems' to work with. (Turns out, the rain came later than night, instead of today. Figures.)
Since I'd forgotten to dirt them up with cocoa, I finger-painted a few cocoa dots onto the tops. That seemed to work.
A couple of sugar decorations to finish it off, and viola!; a Yule Log.
Which is resting comfortably in a constructed-just-for-this-purpose box in the deep freezer, waiting for the family dinner on the 27th.
Many, many other brave souls have tackled this challenge, so be sure to visit the Daring Bakers Blogroll and give a virtual pat on the back to everyone who survived!
Tagged with: Food and Drink + Baking + Yule Log + Daring Bakers + Genoise + Buttercream + Mint + Chocolate + Meringue