Christmas Yule Log

This is made using the whisking method, it’s lower in fat than normal sponges as there is no added butter, until you come to the buttercream topping so don’t kid yourself that it’s in any way healthier or low in fat, it isn’t, at all, no way.  This is a great cake to encourage children to make, yes they can do it with a little supervision, the photos are ones children made and decorated

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Ingredients:
5 eggs, separated
70g plain flour
30g cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
100g caster sugar

Ingredients for the chocolate buttercream:
100g soft butter
300g icing sugar, sieved
2 heaped tbsp good quality cocoa powder
a little milk

  1. Preheat the oven to 180oc/gas 4.  Grease a 40 x 33 cm swiss roll tin and line with baking parchment.  Sieve flour and cocoa powder together and set aside.
  2. Whisk the egg whites using an electric whisk until they reach ‘soft peak’, add the cream of tartar and mix until they form stiff peaks.  Add half of the sugar and whisk back to soft peak.
  3. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until thick, pale and creamy and the mixture leaves a trail when the whisk is lifted from the bowl.
  4. Using a metal spoon carefully fold in the flour and cocoa powder. Spoon into a swiss roll tin and cook for 8-12 minutes until springy to the touch.
  5. Cut a piece of baking parchment larger than the swiss roll tin, sprinkle with caster sugar and a little flour.  Tip the sponge onto the parchment while it's still hot, peel away the baking parchment that you cooked the cake in, roll the sponge up with the new parchment inside, set aside to cool.  You need to do this quickly, if the sponge cools it will crack as you roll it.
  6. Mix up the buttercream; beat the butter and icing sugar in an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy, sift in the cocoa power and add a little milk and mix to a stiff icing.
  7. When the cake is cool unroll the swiss roll, fill with buttercream, reroll then cut off a slice at one end and place 5 cm down to look like a branch, cover the yule log with more buttercream and use a fork to make the outside look like bark, decorate with a sugarpaste robin.

Yule log at cooking club