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Buche de Noel

Makes: 12  servings Prep 1 hr Bake 425°F 6 mins

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup  granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon  lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup  blanched almonds, toasted and chopped
  • 1/4 cup  hazelnuts, toasted, skinned, and chopped
  • 1/4 cup  water
  • 1/2 cup  granulated sugar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1/8 teaspoon  salt
  • 1 1/2 cups  unsalted butter, cut up and softened
  • 3/4 teaspoon  vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces  semisweet chocolate squares, melted and cooled
  • 2 ounces  unsweetened chocolate squares, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup  cake flour (not self-rising)
  • 1/8 teaspoon  salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup  granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon  vanilla extract
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 4 tablespoons  confectioners' sugar, divided
  • Chocolate-dipped hazelnuts, chocolate curls, and currants

Directions

1. For praline, grease a cookie sheet. Cook the 1/3 cup sugar and the lemon juice in a saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar begins to melt (do not stir). Then cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar melts completely and turns deep golden. Stir in nuts; immediately pour onto sheet. Cool. Break up praline; process in food processor until finely ground.

2. For buttercream, combine water and 1/2 cup sugar in a small saucepan. Whisk over medium-high heat to dissolve sugar; boil until syrup registers 240 degrees F (soft ball stage) on candy thermometer.

3. Meanwhile, beat 3 egg whites and 1/8 teaspoon salt at medium speed in a mixer bowl, until foamy. Beat to stiff peaks. Slowly pour in boiling (240 degree F) sugar syrup. Beat until cool and thick. Beat in butter, a few pieces at a time, until blended. Add 3/4 teaspoon vanilla and beat until smooth and stiff.

4. Combine 1-1/2 cups of the buttercream and the ground praline. Stir melted chocolates into remaining buttercream.

5. For cake, heat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease a 15x10-1/2x1-inch jelly-roll pan. Line with waxed paper; grease and flour paper. Set aside.

6. Combine flour and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Beat the 2 eggs and 3 egg yolks in mixer bowl until thick. Beat in 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Add the 1 teaspoon vanilla and beat until thick. Beat egg whites in clean mixer bowl until foamy. Gradually beat in remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Beat to soft peaks. Gently fold whites into egg yolk mixture just to combine. Sift flour mixture over egg mixture; gently fold mixtures until just combined. Spread batter in pan.

7. Bake cake until center springs back when lightly touched, 6 to 8 minutes. Sift 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar over top. Immediately invert onto a clean towel. Remove pan and paper; sift remaining confectioners' sugar over top. Roll up cake from one long side with towel, jelly-roll fashion. Cool cake in towel.

8. Unroll cake. Set aside 1/3 cup praline butterceam; spread remainder on cake and reroll.

9. Thinly spread log with 1/3 cup chocolate buttercream (do not coat ends). Spoon remainder into pastry bag fitted with #98 (French star semicircle tip). Pipe parallel lines lengthwise to cover cake. Spoon remaining praline buttercream into pastry bag fitted with 1/4-inch round tip; pipe in circles to cover ends of cake.

10. Decorate cake with chocolate-dipped hazelnuts, curls, and currants. Makes 12 servings.

Note

  • For best results, separate eggs while cold; then let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before using.

Make Ahead Tip

  • Cake can be made ahead. Refrigerate 1 hour; cover loosely and refrigerate overnight. Let stand at room temperature 2 hours before serving.

Nutrition Facts

  • Servings Per Recipe 12
  • cal.(kcal)520,
  • Fat, total(g)38,
  • chol.(mg)151,
  • sat. fat(g)19,
  • carb.(g)44,
  • fiber(g)2,
  • pro.(g)7,
  • sodium(mg)94,
  • Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet