Chocolate Yule Log

This is a Christmas classic for all those who appreciate chocolate and buttercream… ;-)

I had so much fun decorating it with the cake decorations kindly sent from the UK by my Mum. For although the Germans are famous for their cakes and tarts, they don’t have Christmas cakes and don’t decorate their stollens with plastic ornaments… I wonder how and when the tradition began in England! (Any ideas anyone?)

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You don’t think I went over the top with the decorations, do you?

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I loved the snowman – he looked so real. (Can a snowman look real?)

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But Father Christmas and Rudolph were pretty cute too!

This was surprisingly easy and didn’t take me as long as I thought it would.

Chocolate Yule Log

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You will need:

  • 75g caster sugar
  • 3 free-range eggs
  • 70g (1/2 cup) self-raising flour
  • 5g (1 tsp) cornflour
  • 3 tbsps cocoa powder
  • butter/flour for greasing pan

Filling/topping:

  • 100g (7 tbsps) softened butter
  • 100g (4/5 cup) icing sugar
  • 75g (3 0z) milk chocolate
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 6 tbsps blueberry (or any other) jam

Preheat oven to 200°C/400F and grease and flour a 23x30cm (9 x 12 inch) swiss roll tin.

With an electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar in a large bowl until pale and fluffy – about 5 minutes. Gently fold in sieved flour, cornflour and cocoa powder. Pour mixture into pan and bake for 7-10 mins until just coming away from the edges of the pan and springy to the touch.

Prepare a sheet of greaseproof paper a little larger than the pan and turn the cake onto it. Roll up tightly straight away, in the paper, from the short side. Leave to cool.

Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a bain marie, or in a dish over a pan of boiling water. Allow to cool a little. Beat the sifted icing sugar and butter together until very smooth. Beat in the melted chocolate and cocoa.

Now unroll the cooled swiss roll and spread the jam over it. Then spread a quarter of the buttercream over that and roll the cake up again with the join at the bottom. You could now slice a little off the end at an angle to put at the side as a branch. Place on your serving dish and then carefully spread the rest of the buttercream all over the roll. Finally, use a fork to create the effect of the bark on your log. Then chill for a good two hours.

Now you can decorate it with whatever takes your fancy… after all, it IS Christmas! Sprinkle a little icing sugar over it too, for a snowy effect.

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Enjoy!

(As you can see, we did! ;-) )

Do you go over the top at Christmas? Do tell!

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54 thoughts on “Chocolate Yule Log

  1. Hi Cathy, I just wrote a long comment about the origin of English Christmas Crackers–the fun paper “pulls” that are put on the table at holiday celebrations and are filled with small toys, whistles, paper hats. They are the iconic Christmas Cracker! I read that this tradition began in the early 1900s in England with a candy maker who used paper wrappings to hold his candies and toys. Many years later, the pretty decorative and fun thing we know as the traditional Christmas Cracker was born. Anyway, my whole post evaporated! I’m trying once again…..and then phooey. Hope this one works! Others may know much more about this tradition than me.

    Your cake looks absolutely lovely and yummy. Susie at life-change-compost

    • Hi Susan! I read that the baker who invented them got the idea from French bonbons… My family always has them in the UK and the luxury ones often include rather nice little gifts. Unfortunately the jokes included are as bad as ever! Hope you get the article finished without further mishaps. And thanks for visiting! :D

  2. This is so beautiful, absolutely perfect for Christmas, I would love a slice with a nice cup of tea :-) I’ve got to get my cookies and stollen made this weekend too, if I do my baking any earlier in the month it is all gone by the big day!

  3. Love it! That really brought back memories, we always used to have chocolate log at Christmas, though it was always touch and go whether anybody had enough room for it on Christmas Day, and we always used the same little ornaments too. Wonder if my Mum still has them.

    • We always had one too, and since I didn’t like Christmas cake I would mostly go for that… or the trifle! ;-) My Mum couldn’t find her original ornaments, but perhaps they’ll turn up yet.

  4. Cathy, this is so lovely, its a really nostalgic fun cake too. My husbands birthday is Christmas day and as children of the 60′s and I think he would absolutely love one of these this year. :)

  5. Mmmmmmm – now that looks seriously delicious Cathy. My mum always used to make a chocolate log which was my favourite seasonal cake. I can still remember being allowed to scrape any leftover buttercream that clung to the bowl. There were certainly festive plastic decorations back in the 1970s and probably even before then. Love your snowman and mushroom :)

    • The buttercream is exceptionally good – it was the first time I’ve used real chocolate in it. There was a lot of spoon-licking while making this, rest assured! :D It made me a bit nostalgic too!

  6. Oh, that looks so good. I was just at a Christmas lunch at the office and this would have been the perfect addition. Maybe we’ll try making it next week. I love the idea of mixing in blueberry jam.

  7. What an inviting scene! It’s really too pretty to eat! My grandmother made very creative yule logs and I’ve never followed suit. I don’t go over-the-top but it’s mostly because I just run out of time. I always admire the work of those who do! What a lovely gesture to receive this little hug from your Mum!

    • That is a lovely thought – the nearest I will get to a hug from my Mum this Christmas I’m afraid. My grandmother was not a great cook, but there was usually a bought yule log on her Christmas table too… and trifle, which is another rather time-consuming dessert to create! Hope you have time to breathe deeply this weekend Debra!

  8. I love Yule logs, my recipe has only cocoa powder and no flour or fat so is full of flavour but not heavy. I use whipped cream to cover with drizzles of melted chocolate, mmmmm, think I’d better get baking.

  9. What a work of art, Cathy! The decorations are beautiful and I admire your patience in creating such a masterpiece. Too beautiful to be eaten. I haven’t been baking for the past few years as friends send us stollen etc. but we certainly eat very well as the French do all year round for that matter!

  10. Hi Cathy, no such thing as going over the top! And I think, no I know snowmen are real!!! I’ve never made a chocolate log before, and you are right it does sound easy, thank you x

    Wishing you a splendid Christmas and a super happy New Year!

  11. I have about a hundred little plastic gnomes doing gymnastics that I had to buy in bulk in Paris. I love a good yule log. We opted for chocolate mousse this year out of ease (well it tasted pretty good too). Honestly, email me your address and I’ll send you some of these little guys!

    • LOL! I’m not quite sure what I’d do with them Wendy, but thanks for the offer! (Could be the subject for an amusing post…)! Chocolate mousse is my second favourite chocolate dessert, and probably a lot quicker than this. But a yule log has a firm place in my Christmas repertoire now. Have a great weekend. :D

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