Cooking with Karel Anne: Buche de Noel 2016

Welcome to the final week of "WHAT am I going to feed these people?"
I have the perfect answer : Chocolate dessert
As you know, my hallmark comment is, "Have we gotten to the hard part yet?" This recipe has a couple of those, and I am including photos as well as you seeing the demonstration.
This is probably the longest and hardest one I have done for you, and I can assure you, the first forkful tells you it's worth it.
I hope you find time to enjoy those folks who came to see you, and I always appreciate seeing you here, too.
Merriest of Christmases!!
Chef Karel Anne

Buche de Noel 2016

Serving Size : 12
6 eggs -- separated

-- Bowl A
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate -- slightly melted
1/2 cup unsalted butter -- softened
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt -- (pinch)

-- Bowl B
1/4 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup cake flour
2 Tablespoons cocoa powder

-- Bowl C
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

-- Buttercream Frosting
2 sticks unsalted butter -- very soft
3 tablespoons brandy
4 cups confectioner's sugar -- (1/2 cup less than 16 oz box)
1/4 cup semisweet chocolate -- melted

-- Garnish
sugared cranberries and a few rosemary sprigs

1. Separate eggs and set aside to room temperature.

2. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray lipped cookie sheet pan with shortening spray. Line with parchment paper; then spray paper as well. In large glass bowl ("A" listed above), melt the chocolate, then add the softened butter, and microwave the combination for a few seconds to combine. Beat egg yolks into the warm mixture with an electric mixer on high speed until thick; *at least* one minute and thirty seconds, up to two full minutes. On low speed, beat in oil, vanilla and salt, just until blended. .

3. Measure almonds, flour and cocoa into a small bowl and stir to combine. (Bowl "B")

4. In medium bowl (Bowl "C"), beat egg whites with the cream of tartar on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, beating on high speed until stiff peaks form. Mix a generous half cup of the egg whites into the melted chocolate mixture to lighten it.

5. Gently fold egg whites into the chocolate egg yolk mixture. Sprinkle more than half of the flour mixture over the egg batter, and fold gently. Add remaining flour and fold just until blended. Pour into pan, spreading batter to the corners.

6. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center. When removed from oven, immediately loosen cake from edges of pan; turn upside down onto towel. Carefully remove parchment paper; trim off edges of cake if necessary. While hot, starting with long side, carefully roll up cake; place on cooling rack. Cool at least 30 minutes.

7. Meanwhile, mix softened butter with brandy, and add confectioners' sugar one cup at a time to create the buttercream frosting.

8. Unroll cake; remove towel. Spread half of the buttercream over cake. Roll up cake. Cut 2-inch diagonal slice from 1 end of cake roll. Place cake on serving platter; position cut piece against side of cake roll to look like a branch.

9. Add melted 1/4 cup of chocolate to remaining buttercream and frost cake. With tines of a fork, make strokes in the frosting to look like tree bark. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, then garnish with sugared cranberries and rosemary sprigs.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Per Serving : 570 Calories; 34g Fat (51.9% calories from fat); 5g Protein; 65g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 168mg Cholesterol; 140mg Sodium.

Chef Notes: Using very cold milk, preparing chocolate Jell-O pudding and immediately icing the cake works. It MUST stay refrigerated, or the pudding will 'weep'.