Christmas Pattern Log Cake
11 months ago by Annette Tan
Our version of the Christmas log cake features a repeated pattern on a Swiss roll filled with unsweetened chocolate ganache to yield a lush, rich dessert. Making the prints can be time-consuming if you’ve never done it before, but once you get the hang of it, it’s actually pretty easy.
All you need is a steady hand and a sense of how the batter will fall onto the parchment paper when piped. I tend to work in a dotting motion to fill the “gifts” and the “holly” in the template. Rather than use the template we’ve created for you, you could also pipe any pattern you please onto the cake. The piped pattern can be frozen for up to a day before baking. Once you’ve baked and assembled the cake, and wrapped it tightly in cling film, it will keep for up to a week. Feel free to decorate your printed log cake with a bit of fresh cream or berries to enliven it even more — it’s Christmas, after all!
PATTERNED BITTER CHOCOLATE SWISS ROLL
1½ cups whipping cream
200g dark chocolate, chopped
- Make the ganache filling first by placing the whipping cream in a saucepan. Place the dark chocolate in a large bowl.
- Bring the cream to a rolling boil and then pour over the chocolate. Leave for 30 seconds, then gently stir till the mixture is thick, dark and smooth. Cover and refrigerate.
1 egg white
40g plain flour
20g butter, softened at room temperature
a few drops of red and green food colouring
- Prepare a 26cm x 36cm sheet pan. Cut out a piece of parchment paper to fit the sheet pan. Place the pattern template in the centre of the sheet pan and then place the parchment paper on top. Set aside.
- To make the batter for the pattern, beat the egg white in a bowl with a fork to break it up. Add sugar and flour and mix to combine.
- Beat in the butter to make a smooth paste.
- Divide the batter into three small bowls and tint one bowl with red colouring and another with green colouring. Stir to mix so you get an even-coloured batter. Leave the remaining bowl of batter as is.
- Transfer each batch of batter to a small disposable piping bags. Or use any small square or rectangular plastic bag.
- Squeeze the batter to the corner of each bag and cut a very tiny hole in that corner which you will use to pipe the pattern.
- Pipe the pattern onto the parchment-lined sheet pan, working with one colour at a time. We used red for the lower half of the stocking, the flowers on the holly and the outline of the presents. We used green for the holly leaves, while the plain batter was used to fill in the gifts and the tops of the stockings.
- Place the pan in the freezer while you work on the cake batter.
CHOCOLATE CAKE6 large eggs, separated
¾ cup sugar
½ cup cocoa powder
⅛ tsp salt icing sugar, for dusting
- Preheat oven to 180 ̊C.
- Whisk the egg yolks and sugar by hand until pale but not holding any air. Sift in the cocoa powder and whisk to mix evenly.
- Place the egg whites and salt in a dry, clean bowl of an electric mixer. Whip on high speed until they hold a medium peak when the beaters are lifted.
- Gently fold a third of the whites into the yolk mixture by hand, using your whisk attachment or a regular whisk.
- Gently fold in the remaining two thirds until evenly incorporated. • Remove the tray from the freezer and remove the template from under the parchment paper. The piped batter should have solidified by now.
- Spread the cake batter evenly onto the prepared pan, over the piped pattern. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes. To check if the cake is done, lightly touch the centre of it with your fingers. It should spring back to the touch.
- While the cake is baking, prepare two damp dishcloths.
- Carefully remove the cake from the pan and set on a cooling rack, parchment side down.
- Place a damp dishcloth on top of the cake, then place another cooling rack over the cloth. Invert the cake and carefully peel off the parchment paper.
- Place the second damp dishcloth over the cake, and the place the cooling rack on top.
- Invert the cake again and carefully remove the cooling rack and dishcloth on top.
- Now gently roll up the cake and leave it rolled up until it cools completely.
- Remove the ganache filling from the fridge and give it a whisk. If it is too hard, microwave it for a few seconds to soften it.
- Unroll the cake and spread a thick layer of ganache over it. Then roll up the cake tightly and cover with cling film.
- Refrigerate for at least two hours so that the ganache can set, before cutting and serving.
Download our specially created Christmas design for your patterned log cake: Log Cake Template