In France, the traditional Christmas dessert is a genoise rolled and filled with flavoured creme au beurre, iced with more creme au beurre and decorated with little Christmas plastic figures. It’s called a log as it should look like one: we use a fork to make the icing look like the bark of a tree and we use cut outs of the genoise to looks like stumps. This year however, I had my heart set on an original version of this dessert, which looks like Rudolph the red nose reindeer. I thought it would be fun for my little daughter so here it is…
90g sieved flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
Creme au beurre
4 egg whites
170g icing sugar
250g softened butter
70g dark chocolate
70g chestnut purée (unsweetened if possible)
40g dark chocolate
10g white chocolate
1 glacé cherry for the nose
- The day before, make the genoise and creme au beurre:
- Preheat the oven at 180C.
- Prepare the genoise : put the eggs and sugar in the TM bowl with the butterfly whisk and mix 10 min/speed 3, measuring cup OFF. The mixture will triple in volume.
- Tip out into a bowl and add the sieved flour and baking powder. Mix delicately with a spatula with a folding motion.
- Line a baking tray with a buttered and floured baking parchment.
- Pour the genoise batter on the tray, spreading the mix with a spatula in a rectangle shape about 1 cm thick.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
- Wet a clean tea lightly towel by throwing drops of water all over (don’t over wet, it should just be humid).
- Leave to cool slightly before turning onto the tea towel and gently peel the parchment away, work slowly and if the genoise is stuck, use a spatula to release it gently.
- Straight away, roll into the tea towel like a swiss roll and leave to cool completely.
- To make the creme au beurre : clean and dry the TM bowl thoroughly and place the butterfly whisk in it. Add the 4 egg whites and whisk 4 min/speed 3, measuring cup OFF.
- Whisk 5 min/70C/speed 3, measuring cup OFF and add progressively the icing sugar while whisking.
- When the 5 minutes are over, whisk on speed 3 for about 18 min or until the bowl is luke warm to the touch. You’ve just made Italian meringue using the Thermomix!
- Turn on the machine to speed 3 again and drop small pieces of softened butter through the hole in the lid. The mixture will turn into a foamy cream.
- Tip 2/3 in a bowl and add 70g of chestnut purée. mix with a hand whisk.
- Melt the chocolate in the microwave, 30 seconds at a time and stirring between each cooking time until a few bits of unmelted chocolate subside. Mix to melt it and leave to cool before adding to the the 1/3 of creme au beurre that is left in the bowl. Mix 20 sec/speed 3.
- Unroll the genoise and spread 1/3 of the chesnut creme au beurre on one half of the sponge. Spread all of the chocolate creme au beurre on the other half.
- Roll the genoise and cut each end to have a clean edge.
- Cling film and refrigerate with the remaining creme au beurre until the next day (!! caution though if you don’t have a powerful electric whisk, see next step).
- On the day, leave the creme au beurre at room temperature for 30 minutes to soften. Whisk well and spread over the rolled genoise to cover it all over. I had a little problem with my cream, it looked like the butter had split so I used my Kitchenaid to whisk at the maximum speed and it brought it back to normal. If you don’t have a Kitchenaid, it would be preferable to spread the creme au beurre on the rolled genoise the day before…
- Dust with sieved cocoa powder.
- To make the antlers: draw a template on a piece of paper. Use an acetate sheet (you can find them in an office supply store, it’s the transparent sheet used for retro-projectors) and place on top of the paper.
- Melt the dark chocolate and apply with a brush on the acetate sheet following your tempate. Apply a few coats to make the antlers nice and thick, it would be easier to handle later.
- Do the same for the eyes using white chocolate and dark chocolate (I used a toothpick to apply rather than the brush as it’s more finecky). Leave in the fridge for 10 minutes and carefully lift off the acetate sheet. Make the shiny side visible on the log for a better finish.
- Use a glacé cherry for the nose and voilá !
Don’t be scared by the number of steps, this cake will need patience but nothing is really complicated.
Happy Christmas to all!