Buche de Noel

Make this Yule log cake a family tradition during the holidays. It is a bit involved, but the rave reviews will be worth it!

Makes 10 servings

Cake:
3 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup Gold Medal all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Filling:
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons instant coffee granules or crystals

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting:
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons hot water

Garnish:
1/2 cup chopped green pistachio nuts

1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Line 15 x 10 x 1-inch pan with foil or waxed paper; grease with shortening or cooking spray. In small bowl, beat eggs with electric mixer on high speed about 5 minutes or until very thick and lemon colored. Pour eggs into large bowl; gradually beat in 1 cup granulated sugar. Beat in 1/3 cup water and the vanilla extract on low speed. Gradually add flour, baking powder and salt, beating just until batter is smooth. Pour into pan, spreading batter to corners.

2. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Immediately loosen cake from edges of pan; invert onto towel generously sprinkled with powdered sugar. Carefully remove foil. Trim off stiff edges of cake if necessary. While hot, carefully roll cake and towel from narrow end. Cool on cooling rack at least 30 minutes.

3. In chilled medium bowl, beat all filling ingredients on high speed until stiff. Unroll cake; remove towel. Spread filling over cake. Roll up cake.

4. In medium bowl, beat cocoa and butter on low speed until thoroughly mixed. Beat in powdered sugar until mixed. Beat in vanilla and enough of the hot water until frosting is smooth and spreadable.

5. For tree stump, cut off a 2-inch diagonal slice from one end of cake. Attach stump to one long side using 1 tablespoon frosting. Frost cake with remaining frosting. With tines of fork, make strokes in frosting to look like tree bark. Garnish with nuts.

The chopped pistachio nuts give your cake “log” a natural moss-covered appearance. Other edible natural-looking adornments include chocolate leaves, meringue mushrooms, mint gumdrop leaves and red cinnamon candies.

Substitution
Rise to the occasion! If using self-rising flour, there is no need to add baking powder and salt.

Nutrition Information: 1 Serving: Calories 420 (Calories from Fat 170); Total Fat 18g (Saturated Fat 10g, Trans Fat 1/2g); Cholesterol 105mg; Sodium 180mg; Total Carbohydrate 58g (Dietary Fiber 2g, Sugars 47g); Protein 5g

Percent Daily Value*: Vitamin A 10%; Vitamin C 0%; Calcium 6%; Iron 8%

Exchanges: 1 Starch; 3 Other Carbohydrate; 0 Vegetable; 3 1/2 Fat Carbohydrate Choices: 4

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.


Recipe and photograph provided courtesy of Betty Crocker 2007/TM General Mills.