Bûche de Noël, French Yule Log

This past Sunday, we were fortunate enough to get lessons on how to make a French Yule Log, Bûche de Noël, with the girls’ French tutor, Aurore. On a busy December weekend, she patiently showed us how to make the cake, its filling and frosting.

I read somewhere that the Yule Log originated from an old pre-Christian tradition in France of burning logs in the fireplace or hearth during winter solstice. Then, in the 1800s, a French pastry chef came up with the idea of replacing the real “Yule” Log with a cake that’s log shaped.

I don’t think there’s really a more typical Christmas French dessert than the Bûche de Noël, which today comes decorated with classic meringue mushrooms on top as well as more modern variations like Aurore’s cake with its milk chocolate stockings as topping.  Our finished cake was so delicious and indulgent that one of the girls’ friends (who does not like sweets) said, “Aurore, this is the best dessert I’ve ever had.”

I’ll be serving this cake tonight for the special Christmas Eve meal that Filipinos call Noche Buena. Cannot wait to share it with everyone in my family. In the meantime, I wish you the best of this holiday season. Merry Christmas, Joyeux Noël and Maligayang Pasko!

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