Posted by: njbrown | December 6, 2009

Bûche de Noël

December 6, 2009

Julia’s Bûche de Noël is in progress.  Using my new no-name food processor, I pulverized the blanched almonds with sugar in the small container, and it worked like a charm.  Whether the charm will continue is the big question.  I took the Bûche from the oven as soon as it bounced back, having over-baked them in the past, and wanting to finally avoid the cracking problem.  George said I didn’t do a sixteenth of an inch layer of confectioner’s sugar the first time – I wasn’t about to measure – but I did a heavier layer the second time (after it was unmolded).  The Bûche is now wrapped in a dampened towel and plastic wrap cooling in the refrigerator as per Julia’s instructions.  The moment of truth will come later when I try to unroll it…

Later –

Amazingly, it unrolled, and although there were minor cracks on the top, when I rolled it back up after filling it, the cracks were on the inside only.  Since Julia had had such trouble with this on the French Chef – although more with getting the icing to stay on – I feel I have accomplished something.  (Robert Irvine and Tyler Florence tried to make a Yule Log on an Iron Chef episode, and theirs didn’t roll at all.)  With the almonds, Julia’s is crunchy, and since George doesn’t like nuts, while he likes the orange flavor, I think tomorrow I’ll try the chocolate equivalent I found on the Web.  The chocolate one has twice as many eggs so should make a thicker cake, and as it is filled with chocolate whipped cream, and should be a lighter dessert.  If it turns out, I’ll post the recipe.

[December 24, 2009 Julia’s Bûche de Noël for Christmas – with recipe]

George is now saying he thinks I should take a Bûche to the men’s dinner instead of the cheesecake with ruffles.

The scallops in saffron sauce were pleasant, but I am suspicious that this second batch of saffron isn’t as good as it should be.  There was little discernible saffron color or flavor in the sauce.

The half-decorated Christmas tree just fell over, so it’s time to stop –




  1. Well, I had no idea how much baking and cooking was happening at the Brown house. It reads like you’ve really found a passion. This dedication has impressed me, not to mention made my mouth water, not really, but it sounds very good, although extremely challenging.

    • It is quite scary that I haven’t had any catastrophes so far. Pride goeth before destruction, etc…. Any time you want to come and taste-test, you’re invited.


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