Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Gingerbread Bûche de Noël - Tuesdays with Dorie

This week's TWD choice from Baking Chez Moi was a recipe I approached with some trepidation; there were multiple components to this dessert, some involving some rather tricky (for me) techniques. But at the same time, I looked forward to the challenge...improving my baking skills was one of my reasons for joining this group after all so I forged ahead.

Well, it seems I needn't have worried since Dorie managed to guide me through the steps that concerned me most. I didn't burn the caramel for the pralines, I didn't deflate my sponge cake batter (too much) while trying to incorporate all of those pesky flour pockets and though it was perhaps a tad over baked at 13 minutes in my oven, the cake didn't break apart when I rolled it. Dorie told me not to worry about the cracks so I didn't, and armed with my trusty instant read thermometer, even the dreaded marshmallow frosting (that I made with only three egg whites) turned out. 
The result was a delicious Bûche de Noël made of a moist, lightly spiced cake, filled with a tangy, creamy filling and decorated with an ethereal whipped frosting studded with crunchy pecan pralines. I took a torch to the frosting since I think marshmallows are at their best toasted - actually just an excuse to play with one of my kitchen toys ;)!

This was my contribution to a dessert buffet and it was very well received, one of the first to disappear. Many commented that it wasn't overly sweet with the tangy filling a great counterpoint to the sweetness of the other elements and that it was quite light. Dorie says to serve it chilled, but it ended up served at room temperature. It held up well and I actually preferred it this way with the filling and cake a softer texture and the spice flavours a little more pronounced. I would definitely make this again.

Visit TWD to see everyone else's lovely cakes.

22 comments:

  1. Your buche is perfect!!! Hope to get back to baking with you all after the holidays!

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  2. Using a torch on the frosting is genius-wish I had thought to do that. It looks amazing and I bet it tasted fantastic.

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  3. Oooh, I love the torch idea and will definitely be using that when I make the cake again! Absolutely beautiful!

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  4. Oh My!!! I love the torched marshmallow!!! Brilliant! Great job :)

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  5. Thank you for your link on making this cake. The information was invaluable to me. You cake looks perfect and I am glad that it was well received. Happy Holidays.

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  6. Spectacular. I love that you torched the meringue a little bit -- what a nice touch!

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  7. You give me confidence! Making for Christmas...

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  8. Oh, that looks perfect. A challenge for sure, but now we know we can do it. Happy Holidays.

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  9. Your buche looks amazing, and I love that you torched some of the frosting - an extra touch.

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  10. The caramelized meringue looks delicious. Way to go for thinking about that!

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  11. Torch the marshmallow ? GENIUS !!!! Gorgeous, gorgeous results- your cake looks amazing. And I am so looking for that creme brûlée torch of mine.....:)

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  12. Ooh I love that you torched the marshmallow! My sister asked if I was going to do the same but that is probably the only kitchen tool I am missing. I wonder if Santa is reading this? hint hint ;0)
    Simply beautifully done.
    ~cheers

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  13. Beautiful job on this, and Iove the torching touch ;-)

    Happy Holidays!

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  14. Dorie did make it easy, didn't she. Great job. Wish I had torched mine. Added a great look.

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  15. Quite beautiful and I agree that it was fun to make. I don't have a kitchen torch (or any kind of torch for that matter) but I surely like the look of your bûche after the torch treatment.

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  16. Oh, that is so pretty! I love the torched meringue...I'm going to note that in my book in case I make it again.

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  17. Beautiful! Love the idea of the torch. That's one kitchen toy I don't have. May have to get one with my Christmas gift cards. I made my frosting with only three egg whites as well. It was just about right.
    Carlene

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  18. Your Buche looks beautiful! Love the idea of toasting the meringue frosting…very pretty!

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  19. Beautiful! Lovely idea to toast the frosting.
    Happy New Year!

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  20. Love the torching idea! I have a mini torch and am always looking for a reason to use. The brule effect looks really nice on your buche!
    Happy New Year!

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  21. It looks so beautiful with the toasted icing! Love that idea. Happy New Year!

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  22. Stunningly beautiful! I so wished I had made this one.

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