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holiday baking

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josédemeirelles

Bûche de Noël aux Marrons
Jose de Meirelles, Les Halles--New York, NY
Adapted by StarChefs

A traditional Christmas dessert in the shape of a log, this sponge cake is rolled with chestnut filling and glazed with chocolate.

Yield: 8 servings

  • 1 1/3 cups sifted flour
  • 2 Tablespoons baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup plus 2 ounces sugar
  • 12 ounces canned chestnut purée
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 ounces whole chestnuts, pre cooked or canned or vacuum packed, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 4 ounces dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

Equipment:

  • 2 cookie sheets
  • 1 sheet parchment paper
  • 3 medium mixing bowls
  • 1 wooden spoon
  • 1 electric mixer with bowl
  • 1 wire whisk
  • 1 rubber spatula
  • 1 small saucepan
  • 1 wire rack

Make the sponge cake:

Preheat the oven to 375 F.

Line one cookie sheet with the parchment paper and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt, and mix well by hand or with a wooden spoon. In the bowl of the mixer, beat together the eggs and 1 cup sugar at high speed until they are fluffy and doubled in volume. Using the spatula, carefully fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture to create the batter.

Spread the batter with the spatula evenly across the cookie sheet. Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes, then remove and set aside to cool to room temperature.

Prepare the chestnut filling:

Place the chestnut puree in the bowl of the mixer and add the remaining 2 ounces of sugar. Mix at medium speed until the purée is smooth, and then fold in the chestnut bits.

In a mixing bowl, whip 1/4 cup of the cream with the whisk until it forms soft peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the chestnut puree mixture and set aside.


Prepare the chocolate ganache :

Place the chocolate in a mixing bowl. In a small saucepan, bring the remaining 1/4 cup of cream to a boil. Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate, whisking well for about 2 minutes. Let the mixture cool, stirring occasionally.

To assemble the bûche de noël:

Using a spatula spread the chestnut filling evenly over the entire surface of the sponge cake. Roll it up carefully, in the shape of a log ("Bûche"). To glaze the log, put the wire rack on top of the second cookie sheet. Place the log on the wire rack and pour the ganache over the log, covering the surface as evenly as possible.


Decorating the bûche de noel:

Use pre-made decorations with a Christmas theme (Holly leaves and berries, mushrooms ect…), or make your own using colored marzipan or icings.

 

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