On Thanksgiving, Christian makes the meal and I make the dessert. On Christmas, I make the meal and Christian makes the dessert. This year, Christian decided he wanted to make a buche de noel. I came upon a recipe and his mother sent him some recipes. After much consideration, he decided on the game plan.
The trick to the rolled cake is that the cake itself is (1) very thin and (2) very pliable (because there’s no leavening added). After the cake was done, he had to wrap it in a towel and let it cooled down wrapped up in the towel. This was the cake cools in the shape you want it.
After it is cooled, you unwrap and then brush on the French chocolate mousse made only with egg whites and chocolate. Once the mousse is brushed on you roll it back up.
You then cut a little piece off the end to make a little stump/branch.
Christian choose to frost it with a very delicious frosting – chocolate with a hint of coffee. It was really good frosting. I like frosting. Once the frosting was on, he took a fork and made it look like bark.
Then, together, we used fondant to make “woodland creatures” to decorate the cake with. We have never used fondant in this way, so we were both pretty excited. I had to color the fondant which left my fingers totally stained with food dye for a few days.
The first creature I made was … well, to be honest, it was a bit pathetic. Good for a first try, but I was hoping for better. It was big and square. I wound up having to lay it on top of the cake cause that was about all that was going to happen with it. I then made a second creature copying the technique Christian was using (he is the one with the big nose on the left in the picture below … the dog is Christian’s impressive rendition of our dog).
All in all, we were very pleased with the decorations. For Christian’s first attempt, it was incredible! I could have eaten the whole thing by myself and can’t imagine how it could be improved.