This month we chose to bake a chocolate yule cake. It's a chocolate cake with a hazelnut filling and then topped with a rich chocolate frosting.
I've made pumpkin roll every year so this cake was pretty simple to make. You just need to make sure you have the timing down right. I made the hazelnut filling the day before and while the cake was cooling I made the chocolate ganach.
For the cake:
2/3 cup cake flour, sifted2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup Dutch-process cocoa, sifted
1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
6 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 egg whites
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon instant coffee
2 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 pounds chocolate chips/chopped chocolate
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of a standard rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper, and then spray it with nonstick baking spray with flour.
Whisk together the cake flour, cocoa, 1/3 cup of granulated sugar, baking powder and salt.
In a separate, larger bowl, lightly beat together the eggs, oil and vanilla. Add the flour mixture all at once and stir until just combined.
Using your mixer and a clean bowl, beat together the egg whites and cream of tartar to the soft peak stage, about 5-7 minutes. Drizzle in the remaining 1/3 cup of granulated sugar and continue beating until the whites are stiff and glossy.
Fold a third of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture until just combined, then gently fold in the remaining whites. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the cake springs back when touched lightly.
While the cake is the oven, thoroughly dust a clean dish towel with powdered sugar and lay out on the kitchen counter. When the cake is done, gently invert it onto the dish towel and remove the parchment paper.
Roll the cake up with the dish towel, starting at a long end. Place the entire roll seam side down on a cooling rack.
To make the syrup, combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. When it boils, add the coffee, immediately remove the saucepan from the heat and allow to cool completely.
The frosting needs to be started the day before. Heat the heavy cream but do not boil. Pour onto chocolate and let sit for a few minutes. Go back and stir until it is smooth and shiny. Put into the fridge and let cool completely. Put ganach into mixing bowl and mix until it is lighter in color, and easy to spread.
To assemble the cake, unroll the cake from the dish towel. Brush the cake thoroughly with the syrup. You may have some left over.
Spread the frosting over the remainder of the cake. Carefully re roll the cake and place it seam side down on the desired serving platter. When re rolled finish frosting.