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Several years ago, I discovered an old, tattered looking cookbook out in my parents garage.  The cover was missing and some of the pages were worn, but all and all- it was still good enough for me, so I brought it home.  This book contained your pretty standard, middle of the 20th century recipes.  Pies, comfort foods, a surprising amount of gelatin dishes, some wonderful cocktails and of course holiday treats.  While  perusing through said book the other day, I stumbled across a recipe I had never noticed before.  It was called “Buche de Noel” and thanks to my recent love affair with all things french, I was instantly intrigued.  Apparently, the name translates to yule log and, according to the internet, is a big hit in France and parts of it’s former colonies.  So, with little hesitation, I set out to replicate this remarkable recipe to the best of my ability.  It took some time, but I was so proud of how this cake turned out, that I felt I should share the results with the world and hope that someone out there has the same adventurous attitude toward cooking and eating that I have.  The holidays are about traditions.  Why not start a new tradition by baking this extraordinary cake for you and those closest to you?  C’est la vie.  Joyeux Noel.

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Ingredients For Cake-

-4 Egg Yolks

-1/2 Cup of granulated sugar

-1/2 Teaspoon of vanilla extract

-4 Eggs whites

-1/2 Cup of granulated sugar

-1 Cup of sifted cake flour

-1/2 Teaspoon of baking powder

-Some powdered sugar

-2 Tablespoons of Rum

-And Chocolate Rum Filling (see recipe below)

Instructions For Cake-

1. Beat egg yolks with electric mixer until thick and lemon-colored.

2. Gradually add the first cup of granulated sugar, beating constantly.

3. Stir in vanilla.  Wash beaters.

4. Beat egg whites until soft peaks form.

5. Gradually add second 1/2 cup of sugar until stiff peaks form.

6. Fold in yolk mixture.

7. Sift together cake flour, baking powder and a 1/4 teaspoon of salt; fold into egg mixture.

8. Spoon onto a greased and floured 15 and a half by 10 and a half by 1 inch baking pan.  Bake at 375 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.

9. Promptly loosen edges; turn out onto a towel sprinkled with powdered sugar.  Then, sprinkle with rum.

10. From long side, roll cake and towel together and cool for 20 minutes to a half hour.

11. Unroll cake; spread with half of the chocolate rum filling.  Reroll

12. Diagonally cut a 4 inch piece from the the roll.  Place the cut edge against the longer roll on the serving plate.

13. Frost with remaining chocolate-rum filling.  Mark with tines of fork to resemble bark.

Ingredients For Chocolate Rum Filing-

-1 and a half ounces of unsweetened chocolate

-2/3 Cup of sugar

-1/3 Cup of boiling water

-2 Egg yolks

-1/2 Cup of butter (softened)

-1 Tablespoon of Rum

-1 Tablespoon of coffee

Instructions For Chocolate Rum Filling-

1. In a saucepan, melt chocolate; cool completely.

2. In a second small saucepan, heat sugar and water to a boil, than attach candy thermometer to pan.

3. Cook mixture until it reaches 240 degrees.

4. In small mixing bowl beat egg yolks with electric mixer until thick and lemon-colored.

5. Very gradually add hot syrup, beating constantly.  Continue beating until completely cool.

6. Beat in butter, 1 tablespoon at a time.

7. Add chocolate, rum and coffee.  Beat until thick.

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