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Chocolate Yule Log


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A chocolate roulade makes an elaborate centrepiece at this time of year, so why not give your family a fabulous festive treat with this chocolate roulade. My flourless chocolate roulade is deliciously light and gluten free. Combining cherries, orange and a rich chocolate mousse like filling, it is the perfect prepare ahead dessert as it tastes even better when made the day before. Flavours such as brandy, cointreau, coffee, sweetened chestnut purée and even ginger can be added to the chocolate sponge or filling. 

Decorate into a Yule log for an elaborate, luxurious seasonal centrepiece. 

200g dark chocolate (max 55% cocoa solids), coarsely chopped
25g butter
5 eggs, room temperature, separated into yolks and whites
150g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Chocolate Filling
125g dark chocolate, broken into squares
250g butter, softened
40g icing sugar, sieved
2 tbsp milk

Grease and line a Swiss roll tin (32cm x 22cm) with parchment paper.

Preheat oven to 180°C / 350°F / Gas 4.


  1. Melt chocolate & butter in a bain marie, set aside to cool for 5 mins. Whisk the yolks (and a third of the egg whites) and sugar on a high speed to a thick ribbon like consistency. Add in vanilla extract. Incorporate 2 tablespoons of whisked sugar and yolks mixture into the chocolate, then slowly beat all of the melted chocolate into the yolks mixture.
  2. With clean beaters, whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks. Stir a spoonful of egg white into the chocolate mixture (to loosen it), before folding in the remaining egg whites. Spread the mixture into the prepared tin and bake at 180C for 15 mins until risen and just firm to touch.
  3. Cover the sponge with a clean, damp cloth or damp kitchen paper, and leave to cool fully.
  4. For Chocolate filling: Melt the chocolate gently in a bain marie. Once fully melted, set aside to cool slightly. Using an electric whisk, beat the butter until pale and creamy. Beat in the icing sugar until well combined. Add the melted chocolate into the buttercream until fully combined. Loosen the buttercream by adding a tablespoon of milk at a time until it is silky and spreadable.
  5. Upturn the roulade onto a sheet of parchment dusted with cocoa powder. Peel away paper or cloth. Spread desired fillings over the sponge, leaving a 2cm gap at one short end. Starting from the short end, use gentle pressure to ease the sponge into a roll.
  6. Decorate further with a dusting of cocoa powder, decorating with remaining berries, orange zest and any combination of toasted nuts, chocolate curls, pomegranate seeds.

Other Fillings, Decorations and Scaling:
100ml stiffly whipped cream, zest of 1 orange, 1 tin pitted cherries, (approx 260g), drained, fresh red berries, pomegranate seeds, 2 tbsp cocoa powder, toasted flaked almonds, grated chocolate (or chocolate flake).

Double this recipe and bake in a larger baking tray (for a longer time) to make a sensational occasion roulade. When festooned into a Yule log (or bûche de Noël) it makes a fabulous festive treat.


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