Find tried and tested recipes from McCarthy Stone homeowners, teams and the restaurant chefs in our assisted living (Retirement Living PLUS) developments

Yule log recipe

Also known by its French name bouche de Noel, a Yule Log is essentially a filled, rolled chocolate log. It illustrates the ancient Norse and then later Christian tradition based around burning a symbolic log on the hearth fire.

Yule log - McCarthy Stone
Posted 17 December 2021
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Prep: 2 hours (including cooling) Cook: 30 minutes


For the sponge

  • 100g ground almonds
  • 30g self-raising flour
  • 30g cocoa powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 5 large eggs (separated)
  • 125g caster sugar
  • 125g caster sugar (optional)

For the filling

  • 350ml double cream
  • Zest of half an orange

For the topping

  • 90g cooking chocolate
  • 125g icing sugar (sieved)
  • 110g unsalted butter (softened)

For the decoration

  • Marzipan mushrooms
  • Icing sugar snow



  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180c/160c fan/gas mark 4/350f.
  2. Grease and line a 35 x 26cm swiss roll tin, including the sides, neatly folding at the corners for an even bake.
  3. Mix the ground almonds, flour, cocoa powder and salt together then place to one side.
  4. Place the egg whites into a clean mixing bowl and use an electric whisk to form stiff peaks. Add half of the sugar and beat until thick and glossy.
  5. In another bowl, beat the egg yolks and remaining sugar until pale and fluffy. Gently fold in the mixed dry ingredients followed by the egg white.
  6. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 20–25 minutes or until risen. Once baked, allow to cool in the tin for 5–10 minutes. Brush the amaretto over the sponge.
  7. With a large piece of lightly icing sugar dusted baking parchment, carefully turn the sponge out onto it. Measure 2.5cm from the edge of one of the longer sides and lightly score a line down that edge. Starting from that scored edge, carefully roll the log. Keep the lining paper inside and use the dusted sheet of greaseproof to help with the rolling. Once rolled, leave to one side to cool.
  8. To make the filling, pour the double cream into a mixing bowl and whip to soft peaks. Fold in the orange zest.
  9. To make the topping, break up the Lindt chocolate into small pieces and place in a heatproof bowl over a bain-marie. Stir occasionally until the chocolate has melted and allow to cool. Place the icing sugar and butter in a free-standing mixer and beat until light and fluffy. Pour the cooled chocolate into the topping mix until fully incorporated.
  10. Unroll the sponge and spread a layer of cream over. Re-roll the log and slice one end off at an angle. Put the log on a serving board and place the end piece on the main roll to look like a branch coming off the log.
  11. Using a spatula, spread the chocolate topping over the Yule log. Run a fork down the icing to add a bark texture, and little swirl marks to show the rings of a tree.
  12. When you’re ready to serve, arrange holly on top, add marzipan mushrooms and dust with icing sugar.

*You can make the Yule log the day before, ice and place covered in the fridge then add the garnishes just before serving.

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