Chocolate and walnut yule log

Yule log Christmas dessert


We are counting down the sleeps until Christmas Day and there’s just time for one more Christmas recipe and my last post for 2018! This festive showstopper looks beautiful on the table and makes a decadent and delicious dessert. What is it exactly? My version is essentially a chocolate swiss roll filled with a walnut and cream cheese filling, smothered in chocolate icing and topped with chocolate curls. And in the mandatory log format! (Apologies in advance to your dentists and personal trainers… #sorrynotsorry.)


Yule log Christmas dessertYule log Christmas dessert


It’s gorgeous and it’s yummy and I hope that you will give this chocolate and walnut yule log recipe a go this holiday season. In case you missed them earlier this month, don’t forget to also check out these other Christmas treats: Santa’s Christmas cookies, star topped mince pies and holiday hot chocolate with cinnamon marshmallows! There is also this recipe for pork fillet with cranberries and pecans which I developed for Montagu Dried Fruit and Nuts, you can watch the recipe video HERE.


Yule log Christmas dessert

Yule log Christmas dessert


Have a wonderful holiday season wherever you are – be safe and have fun! Thank you for another incredible year and for following along, there is lots more planned for 2019. See you next year!


Yule log Christmas dessertYule log Christmas dessert


Cook’s notes:

  • The Swiss roll tin I used was 35x22cm.
  • This recipe also works brilliantly with pecan nuts!
  • Be sure to grease your baking paper for this recipe to ensure that the cake comes away easily after baking!
  • When it comes to icing this cake I start by applying a very thin layer of icing (crumb coat). I then pop the cake in the freezer for 15 minutes to allow the icing to set before adding another thicker layer of icing.



For the chocolate cake:

  • butter for greasing
  • 1⁄3 cup flour
  • 2 tbsp cocoa
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1⁄3 cup castor sugar

For the cream cheese filling:

  • 50g butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 75g icing sugar
  • 125g smooth full fat cream cheese
  • 1⁄3 cup walnuts, finely chopped

For the chocolate buttercream:

  • 125g butter
  • 1½ cups icing sugar
  • 3 tbsp cocoa
  • 2 tbsp warm milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • dark chocolate curls for decorating
  • icing sugar for dusting

1.) Start by making the chocolate cake. Preheat your oven to 190ºC. Line a Swiss roll tin with greased baking paper. Let the paper hang over the long sides of the tin to help you lift the cake out once it is baked.

2.) Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.

3.) Place the eggs and castor sugar in a separate bowl. Using an electric beater to whisk together for 8-10 minutes until the mixture is thick, pale and doubled in volume. The mixture should hold a trail for 4-5 seconds.

4.) Sift half of the dry ingredients into the egg mixture and fold in gently. Repeat with the other half of the dry ingredients.

5.) Pour the batter into the prepared tin and gently coax it into an even layer. Bake for 10 minutes or until just baked through.

6.) Remove the tray from the oven, then gently lift the baking paper and cake out of the tin. Working from one long end to the other carefully roll the hot cake in the paper. Set aside to cool completely.

7.) While the cake is cooling prepare the cream cheese filling. Whisk the butter and vanilla extract together until combined and fluffy. Sift in the icing sugar and whisk again until everything comes together. Add the cream cheese and whisk just until the icing is smooth. Lastly, stir in the walnuts.

8.) Carefully unroll the cooled cake and peel away the baking paper. Spread the cream cheese filling over the top of the cake in an even layer. Roll the cake up again, cover and refrigerate while you make the buttercream icing.

9.) To make the buttercream icing whisk the butter until creamy. Sift the icing sugar and cocoa into the bowl and whisk until the mixture comes together. Add the warm milk and vanilla extract. Whisk again until smooth and combined.

10.) Take the cake out of the fridge. Cut off about 1⁄3 of the cake at an angle. Apply some buttercream icing to the slanted side then place the cut off piece alongside the main section of cake to look like a small branch. Ice the cake with the chocolate buttercream icing. (See notes above.)

11.) Decorate the top of the cake with dark chocolate curls and use a fork to make patterns on the ends of the cake. Dust with icing sugar just before serving.


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