Saturday, 27 December 2008

Daring Bakers : French Yule Log

This month's challenge is brought to us by the adventurous Hilda from Saffron and Blueberry and Marion from Il en Faut Peu Pour Etre Heureux.They have chosen a French Yule Log by Flore from Florilege Gourmand.

I couldnt wait for Decembers challenge, something Chrismassy to do in the baking department, when I saw that it was a French Yule Log and looked at the recipe I was like wow :O, it looked so complex and I thought I would never be able to do it, never mind getting it to actually look good. There were so many different combos that you could do to create your perfect log, different flavour mousses, different flavour icing, creme brulees etc etc! I did mine at the very start of December, I normally find that I get more and more busy as it gets nearer to Christmas and since it was only gonna be a small Christmas this year it wouldnt have made a difference as to who got some whether I made it at the start of December or the end. I loved how my French Yule Log turned out and it tasted delicious!!! Hope you all had a lovely Christmas.

Chocolate Almond Dacquoise Biscuit

Starting to prepare the Dacquoise

Chocolate Almond Dacquoise cooling out of the oven

White Chocolate Mousse

Heating the cream with the chocolate

The set mousse

Dark-Milk Ganace Insert

Making a caramel..mmmmm

Set Ganache

Praline Feuilette Insert

Making the lace crepes

Vanilla Creme Brulee

Infusing the cream with the vanilla

Milk Chocolate Icing

Waiting for it to gellify (if thats even a word...)

Assembly and Finished Artical

Ready for Icing


Ok so there were so many different combos..Im just gonna post up the recipe for what I did :)

Chocolate Almond Dacquoise

3/4cup + 1Tbsp / 80g almond meal
1/2 cup / 50g confectioner’s sugar
2Tbsp (15g) all-purpose flour
3Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
100g / ~100ml about 3 medium egg whites
4 Tbsp / 50g granulated sugar

1. Finely mix the almond meal, cocoa powder and the confectioner's sugar. (If you have a mixer, you can use it by pulsing the ingredients together for no longer than 30 seconds).
2. Sift the flour into the mix.
3. Beat the eggs whites, gradually adding the granulated sugar until stiff.
4. Pour the almond meal mixture into the egg whites and blend delicately with a spatula.
5. Grease a piece of parchment paper and line your baking pan with it.
6. Spread the batter on a piece of parchment paper to an area slightly larger than your desired shape (circle, long strip etc...) and to a height of 1/3 inches (8mm).
7. Bake at 350°F (180°C) for approximately 15 minutes (depends on your oven), until golden. 8. Let cool and cut to the desired shape.

White Chocolate Mousse

2.5 sheets gelatin or 5g / 1 + 1/4 tsp powdered gelatin
1.5 oz (3 Tbsp / 40g) granulated sugar
1 ½ tsp (10g) glucose or thick corn syrup
0.5 oz (15g) water
50g egg yolks (about 3 medium)
6.2 oz (175g) white chocolate, coarsely chopped
1.5 cups (350g) heavy cream (35% fat content)

1. Soften the gelatin in cold water. (If using powdered gelatin, follow the directions on the package.)
2. Make a Pate a Bombe: Beat the egg yolks until very light in colour (approximately 5 minutes until almost white).
2a. Cook the sugar, glucose syrup and water on medium heat for approximately 3 minutes (if you have a candy thermometer, the mixture should reach 244°F (118°C). If you do not have a candy thermometer, test the sugar temperature by dipping the tip of a knife into the syrup then into a bowl of ice water, if it forms a soft ball in the water then you have reached the correct temperature.
2b. Add the sugar syrup to the beaten yolks carefully by pouring it into the mixture in a thin stream while continuing to beat the yolks. You can do this by hand but it’s easier to do this with an electric mixer.
2c. Continue beating until cool (approximately 5 minutes). The batter should become thick and foamy.
3. In a double boiler or equivalent, heat 2 tablespoons (30g) of cream to boiling. Add the chopped chocolate and stir until melted and smooth.
4. Whip the remainder of the cream until stiff.
5. Pour the melted chocolate over the softened gelatin, mixing well. Let the gelatin and chocolate cool slightly and then stir in ½ cup (100g) of WHIPPED cream to temper. Add the Pate a Bombe.
6. Add in the rest of the WHIPPED cream (220g) mixing gently with a spatula.

Dark-Milk Ganache Insert

.75 oz (4 Tbsp / 50g) granulated sugar
4.5oz (2/3 cup – 1 Tbsp / 135g) heavy cream (35% fat content)
2.7 oz (75g) milk chocolate
3.2 oz (90g) dark chocolate
3Tbsp + 1/2tsp (45g) unsalted butter softened
1. Make a caramel: Using the dry method, melt the sugar by spreading it in an even layer in a small saucepan with high sides. Heat over medium-high heat, watching it carefully as the sugar begins to melt. Never stir the mixture. As the sugar starts to melt, swirl the pan occasionally to allow the sugar to melt evenly. Cook to dark amber color (for most of you that means darker than last month’s challenge).
2. While the sugar is melting, heat the cream until boiling. Pour cream into the caramel and stir thoroughly. Be very careful as it may splatter and boil.
3. Pour the hot caramel-milk mixture over the dark chocolate. Wait 30 seconds and stir until smooth.
4. Add the softened butter and whip hard and fast (if you have a plunging mixer use it). The chocolate should be smooth and shiny.

Praline Feuillete (Crisp) Insert

Lace Crepes
1/3 cup (80ml) whole milk
2/3 Tbsp (8g) unsalted butter
1/3 cup – 2tsp (35g) all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp / 0.5 oz (15g) beaten egg
1 tsp (3.5g) granulated sugar
½ tsp vegetable oil
1. Heat the milk and butter together until butter is completely melted. Remove from the heat.
2. Sift flour into milk-butter mixture while beating, add egg and granulated sugar. Make sure there are no lumps.
3. Grease a baking sheet and spread batter thinly over it. 4. Bake at 430°F (220°C) for a few minutes until the crepe is golden and crispy. Let cool.

Praline Feuillete

3.5 oz (100g) milk chocolate
1 2/3 Tbsp (25g) butter
2 Tbsp (1 oz / 30g) praline
2.1oz (60g) lace crepes(gavottes) or rice krispies or corn flakes or Special K
1. Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler.
2. Add the praline and the coarsely crushed lace crepes. Mix quickly to thoroughly coat with the chocolate.
3. Spread between two sheets of wax paper to a size slightly larger than your desired shape. Refrigerate until hard.

Vanilla Creme Brulee

1/2 cup (115g) heavy cream (35% fat content)
½ cup (115g) whole milk
4 medium-sized (72g) egg yolks
0.75 oz (2 Tbsp / 25g) granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean
1. Heat the milk, cream, and scraped vanilla bean to just boiling. Remove from the stove and let the vanilla infuse for about 1 hour.
2. Whisk together the sugar and egg yolks (but do not beat until white).
3. Pour the vanilla-infused milk over the sugar/yolk mixture. Mix well.
4. Wipe with a very wet cloth and then cover your baking mold (whatever shape is going to fit on the inside of your Yule log/cake) with parchment paper. Pour the cream into the mold and bake at 210°F (100°C) for about 1 hour or until firm on the edges and slightly wobbly in the center.

Milk Chocolate Icing

1.5 gelatin sheets or 3g / 1/2Tbsp powdered gelatin
4.2 oz (120g) milk chocolate
2 Tbsp (30g) butter
¼ cup (60g) heavy cream (35 % fat content)
1 2/3 Tbsp (30g) glucose or thick corn syrup

1. Soften the gelatin in cold water for 15 minutes.
2. Coarsely chop the chocolate and butter together.
3. Bring the cream and glucose syrup to a boil.
4. Add the gelatin.
5. Pour the mixture over the chocolate and butter. Whisk until smooth.
6. Let cool while checking the texture regularly. As soon as the mixture is smooth and coats a spoon well (it is starting to gelify), use immediately.


2B) Pipe one third of the Mousse component into the mold.
3B) Take the Creme Brulee Insert out of the freezer at the last minute and set on top of the mousse. Press down gently to slightly ensconce it in the mousse.
4B) Pipe second third of the Mousse component around and on top of the Creme Brulee Insert.
5B) Cut the Praline/Crisp Insert to a size slightly smaller than your mold so that it can be surrounded by mousse. Lay it on top of the mousse you just piped into the mold.
6B) Pipe the last third of the Mousse component on top of the Praline Insert.
7B) Freeze for a few hours to set. Take out of the freezer.
8B) Pipe the Ganache Insert onto the frozen mousse leaving a slight edge so that ganache doesn’t seep out when you set the Dacquoise on top.
9B) Close with the Dacquoise.


chef_d said...

white chocolate mousse--yummy!

Cynthia's Blog said...

simply beautiful.

Laura Rebecca said...

Great work! Congratulations on completing a very challenging challenge!

Tartelette said...

Well done Natalie! The log turned out beautiful!

Claire said...

Great job!

Jude said...

Love the step by steps.. Very nice post :)

Aparna said...

Looks really lovely, Natalie. Cute decorations too.
I did mine a bit early too to serve as dessert when friends came over.

Happy New Year!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

What a beautiful log! Very well done!



Snooky doodle said...


Annarasa said...

Looks yummy!!


Jenny said...

Very pretty!

Gretchen Noelle said...

Terrific job! Fun to see things step by step!

Audax said...

Love the detailed notes you gave on each element and the end result is smashing. Love the taste combinations. The phots is fab. Happy NY to you and your family and friends.

breadchick said...

Cute logs! Well done.

Hannah said...

Your yule log looks great! What cute decorations, too. :)

Dharm said...

Fantastic! Your log looks just great.

Sophie said...

aww, this is so pretty :). I like your cute festive layout. Hope you had a great Christmas!

Elra said...

Hello Natalie,
I am sorry I came late to your site. I was trying to look for your site, and I missed the tiny sign/dot at your profile page. So, I tried again this morning, voila.. here you are (I guess I am getting older,lol)

First, I want to wish you all the best for year 2009. And secondly, you yule log looks so pretty. Well done!

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