Sunday, December 28, 2008

It's a Yule Log...I swear

This month's Daring Bakers challenge was a challenge, to say the least. I had wanted to tackle a French yule log last year - the more commonly known sponge cake and buttercream variety - and failed miserably. When I saw that this month's challenge was going to be a different type of yule log full of different layers, I was excited. Something challenging and Christmas-y all in one. Yay! 

The yule log I made is comprised of six different components:

1)  Almond Dacquoise Biscuit
2)  Chocolate Mousse
3)  Chocolate Ganache Insert
4)  Praline (Crisp) Insert
5)  Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee Insert
6)  Dark Chocolate Icing

I managed to make each and every element. Other than the cream brulee, that didn't want to set up no matter how long I kept it in the oven, the remaining elements turned out as they were supposed to. And beyond that, they tasted great! Some elements I was able to make ahead of time, like the biscuit, while others had to be made just before I assembled the whole thing. 

Unfortunately, I thought that I could make the chocolate mousse component ahead of time and pop it in the fridge. Nowhere in the instructions did it say that you couldn't do this. Unfortunately, the chocolate mousse is the most import component! The mousse fills the gaps and envelops the crispy layers. Because my mousse had been sitting in the fridge for an hour or two, it was just too firm. So, when I unmolded the whole "log" after having it sit in the fridge overnight, it was quite apparent that things did not go as planned and the mousse had not spread out to become flush with the sides of the mold. It looked like some sort of crazy geological science project showing the layers of the Earth. Not exactly the look I was going for.

In any event, the log (or chunks of Earth) tasted phenomenal! It may have been one of the ugliest things I have ever made, but it tasted great and was almost like an ice cream cake. Who knew?

So, am I glad I did the challenge? Yes. Do I have plans to try it again next year? Probably not!


This month's challenge is brought to us by the adventurous Hilda from Saffron and Blueberry and Marion from Il en Faut Peu Pour Etre Heureux. They have chosen a French Yule Log by Flore from Florilege Gourmand


Gretchen Noelle said...

Great job on the challenge even though you may not attempt it again next year. A science project, earth layers...that made me chuckle!

Me! said...

Aww, that's how my stuff always ends up looking. I don't think that's bad unless it tastes bad! That's what really matters, right? Right? (yes, of course) That's better.

I had stuck my mousse in the fridge for a few hours too. I had that same thing 'of oh shoot, this set up what am i gonna do' but once I stirred it up a bit it and let it sit on the counter it softened and mine became more spreadable. I probably won't make the whole thing again but I may just make the mousse and eat it by the spoonful.

Lori said...

I am quite sure your chunks of earth tasted good! I think anyone who completed this recipe during a very busy time was successfull!