Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël

This contemporary version of Bûche de Noël is the perfect opportunity to make something extra festive for Christmas. Instead of a roulade and buttercream icing in the traditional French yule log, this modern take is composed of a silky mousse layered with crème brûlée and crispy chocolate praline.

I decided to set the entire mousse cake on chocolate biscuit, a thin sponge cake layer, because I thought it resembled terra firma. The chocolate mousse is also complemented with minty elements — the crème brûlée insert is infused with mint and the chocolate biscuit is brushed with a simple mint syrup.

The measurements in the recipe that follows are in metric weights. All of it. I thought of converting everything to volume and imperial measures like I usually do but take a peek at the recipe and I’m sure you’ll understand. If you don’t own one already, may I recommend this fine weighing scale?

All of the Bûche de Noël components are scaled for a 13-inch half pipe mold, which is about the same size as a roll of aluminum foil. It’s difficult to work with such small amounts, but at the very least, the waste is minimal (resulting in less mindless snacking).

The Daring Bakers: Bûche de Noël / French Yule Log
hosted by Hilda and Marion

recipes for components adapted from Florilege Gourmand, Wayne Gisslen’s Professional Baking, and Michel Suas’ Advanced Bread and Pastry

Chocolate Mint Mousse Bûche de Noël / French Yule Log

makes one 13-inch cake

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Top

Components:

Mint Crème Brûlée Insert
Gavottes / Pailleté Feuilletine
Praliné Feuilleté au Chocolat / Crispy Chocolate Praline Layer
Chocolate Mousse
Mint Syrup
Chocolate Biscuit
Chocolate Ganache
Chocolate Glaçage

Notes:

  • Use 64 to 85 percent for bittersweet chocolate.

Special Equipment:

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Creme Brulee

For the Mint Crème Brûlée Insert:

Ingredients                     Grams
powdered gelatin                    2
cold water                         10
whole milk                          8
heavy cream                        61
fresh mint leaves, chopped         20
granulated sugar                   22
egg yolks                          16

Mint Crème Brûlée Insert Directions:

  1. Line the bottom of the Bûche de Noël mold with parchment.
  2. Bloom the powdered gelatin in the cold water.
  3. Bring the milk and heavy cream to a boil and remove from the heat, Add the mint, cover, and infuse for 30 minutes.
  4. Strain into a bowl set on your weighing scale. Add additional heavy cream to rescale the mixture to its original weight  (69 grams).
  5. In a small saucepan, bring the infused cream and half of the sugar to a boil. Remove from the heat.
  6. Mix the remaining sugar with the egg yolks.
  7. Temper the egg yolks with about one-third of the infused cream.
  8. Return the tempered mixture to the saucepan. Heat the liquid to 180ºF / 82ºC.
  9. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh strainer or chinois.
  10. Add the bloomed gelatin and stir until thoroughly incorporated.
  11. Pour into the parchment-lined Bûche de Noël mold and freeze. Remove from the mold and store in the freezer.

For the Gavottes / Pailleté Feuilletine:

Ingredients                     Grams
whole milk                         40
unsalted butter                     4
all-purpose flour                  18
egg, beaten                         8
granulated sugar                    2

Gavottes / Pailleté Feuilletine Directions:

  1. Heat the milk and butter together until butter is completely melted. Remove from the heat.
  2. Sift flour into milk-butter mixture while beating, add egg and granulated sugar. Make sure there are no lumps.
  3. Grease a baking sheet and spread batter thinly over it.
  4. Bake at 430°F / 220°C for a few minutes until the crepe is golden and crispy. Let cool.

For the Praliné Feuilleté au Chocolat / Crispy Chocolate Praline Layer:

Ingredients                     Grams
milk chocolate, chopped            35
unsalted butter, room temp          9
praline                            11
gavottes / pailleté feuilletine    21

Praliné Feuilleté au Chocolat / Crispy Chocolate Praline Layer Directions:

  1. Melt the milk chocolate and butter in a double boiler.
  2. Add the praline and the coarsely crushed gavottes / pailleté feuilletine. Mix quickly to thoroughly coat with the chocolate.
  3. Spread a 1.5- by 13-inch layer between two sheets of wax paper. Refrigerate until hard.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Pate a Bombe

For the Chocolate Mousse:

Ingredients                     Grams
powdered gelatin                    3
cold water                         15
granulated sugar                   27
glucose or light corn syrup         7
water                              10
egg yolks                          33
heavy cream #1                     20
bittersweet chocolate             116
heavy cream #2                    212

Chocolate Mousse Directions:

  1. Bloom the powdered gelatin in cold water.
  2. Make a pâte à bombe.
    Beat the egg yolks until very light in colour (approximately 5 minutes until almost white).
    Cook the sugar, glucose, and water on medium heat for approximately 3 minutes (if you have a candy thermometer, the mixture should reach 244°F / 118°C. If you do not have a candy thermometer, test the sugar temperature by dipping the tip of a knife into the syrup then into a bowl of ice water, if it forms a soft ball in the water then you have reached the correct temperature).
    Add the sugar syrup to the beaten yolks carefully by pouring it into the mixture in a thin stream while continuing to beat the yolks. You can do this by hand but it’s easier to do this with an electric mixer.
    Continue beating until cool (approximately 5 minutes). The batter should become thick and foamy.
  3. In a double boiler, heat heavy cream #1 (20 grams). Add the chopped chocolate and stir until melted and smooth.
  4. Whip heavy cream #2 (212 grams) until stiff.
  5. Pour the melted chocolate over the softened gelatin, mixing well. Let the gelatin and chocolate cool slightly and then stir in about one-third of the whipped cream to temper. Add the pâte à bombe.
  6. Add in the rest of the whipped cream and mix gently with a spatula.

For the Mint Syrup:

Ingredients                     Grams
granulated sugar                   35
water                              49
fresh mint leaves, chopped          7

Mint Syrup Directions:

  1. In a small saucepan, bring the granulated sugar and water to a boil.
  2. Add the fresh mint leaves and immediately remove from the heat.
  3. Let the mint infuse for at least 15 minutes. Strain and discard the mint leaves.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Biscuit

For the Chocolate Biscuit:

Ingredients                     Grams
pastry flour                       20
cocoa powder                       20

egg yolks                          36
eggs                               82
sugar #1                           65

egg whites                         52
sugar #2                           26

Chocolate Biscuit Directions:

Preheat Oven    400ºF / 205ºC

Prepare a half-sheet pan lined with parchment paper or silicone mat

Mix (Separated Egg Sponge Method)
                Sift together the pastry flour and cocoa powder.

                Whip the egg yolks, whole eggs, and sugar #1 to the
                ribbon stage. In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites
                and sugar #2 to soft-medium peaks.

                Add the meringue to the egg yolk foam in 2 to 3
                installments. Fold in the sifted pastry flour and
                cocoa powder only until absorbed.

Pan             Deposit the batter into the lined sheet pan and
                spread evenly. 

Bake            400ºF / 205ºC for about 9 minutes, or until the edges
                are slightly dark brown.

Cool            Immediately transfer to a wire rack and let the
                cake cool completely at room temperature.

Finishing       Brush with mint syrup (preceding recipe).

For the Chocolate Ganache:

Ingredients                     Grams
heavy cream                        50
bittersweet chocolate, chopped     50
unsalted butter, room temp          8

For the Chocolate Glaçage:

Ingredients                     Grams
heavy cream                        50
bittersweet chocolate, chopped     50
unsalted butter, room temp         17

Chocolate Ganache and Chocolate Glaçage Instructions:

  1. In a small saucepan, bring the heavy cream to a boil and immediately remove from the heat.
  2. Cool to 190ºF / 88ºC and immediately pour over the chopped chocolate. Let rest for about a minute.
  3. Using a rubber spatula, stir gently in a circular motion from the center and work your way outwards as an emulsion is formed.
  4. Once the chocolate cools to 95ºF / 35ºC, add the butter and continue stirring gently just until the butter is thoroughly incorporated. The finished emulsion should be shiny and smooth.
  5. Use immediately for best results.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Inserts
Crispy chocolate praline layer and mint crème brûlée insert

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Assembly:

Line the bottom of the Bûche de Noël mold with parchment.

Pipe one third of the mousse component into the mold. Take the mint crème brûlée insert out of the freezer at the last second and set on top of the mousse. Press down gently to slightly ensconce it in the mousse.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Creme Brulee in Mousse

Pipe second third of the mousse component around and on top of the mint crème brûlée insert. Cut the crispy chocolate praline layer to a size slightly smaller than your mold so that it can be surrounded by mousse. Lay it on top of the mousse you just piped into the mold.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Praline Mousse

Pipe the last third of the mousse component on top of the crispy chocolate praline layer. Level and freeze for a few hours to set.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Leveled

Lightly dust the chocolate biscuit with confectioner’s sugar. Apply a strip of chocolate ganache to serve as the base for the Bûche de Noël log.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël Ganache

Unmold the frozen bûche de noël and place on a wire rack. Lightly dust with cocoa powder and apply the chocolate glaçage. Set on top of the chocolate ganache and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël On Ganache

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96 Responses to “Chocolate Mint Bûche de Noël”

  1. Miri says:

    Jude, this yule log looks so festive and beautiful! Happy Holidays!

  2. Rosa says:

    What an elegant log! Really beautiful and picture perfect!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  3. Gretchen Noelle says:

    I really liked that you set it on a large cake and the fact that you did not try to cover the entire log with icing. The icing recipe did not seem sufficient to get a even covering. Mint…great flavor option!

  4. joelen says:

    Beautiful job! Although time consuming, I’m sure every bite was worth the effort! :)

  5. BonoboCakes says:

    I love you idea for the Chocolate Biscuit as a base. It is truly beautiful. I love mint, But I am alone in this, and never get to make anything with it. I am envious, it looks so refreshing! Happy Holidays!

  6. noble pig says:

    Let me say it’s absolutely fabulous looking!

  7. Mmm, Tasty! | A missed challenge says:

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  8. Candice says:

    Yum, chocolate mint, great combination! I agree that it looks great sitting on the chocolate biscuit base.

  9. Kelly says:

    I love your original presentation and the use of the biscuit base. I’m not normally a huge fan of chocolate and mint but I would definitely be tempted to try a piece! Have a happy new year.

  10. Marija says:

    Beautiful! I love the idea of a chocolate base :)

  11. snookydoodle says:

    This looks so nice! You surely need an accurate scale for this though. I like mint and chocolate :)

  12. Maggie says:

    Wonderful unique presentation! I was hoping to see a log done in mint and chocolate.

  13. Gfron1 says:

    Very classy! Great looking log. I also liked your use of the biscuit base.

  14. Chocolaty Weekend Links says:

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  15. Ivonne says:

    Jude, my friend, you do stunning work. Nicely done!

  16. kat says:

    It turned out beautifully! This is the first Daring Bakers I’ve had to miss & seeing yours makes me wish I had had time.

  17. Hilda says:

    This is so lovely and original! And what a job of writing up the entire recipe the way you did. Fantastic. I’m glad you enjoyed the challenge. Happy New Year!

  18. Sweatha says:

    Lovely and perfectly festive.Love the mint syrup.It sort of freshens the mouth after a chocolatey overdose.Truly great

  19. Micha .:. Scraping the Skillet says:

    Your log looks gorgeous! I love the idea you had for using the biscuit as terra firma – and I bet the mint brought a refreshing edge to this rich dessert!

  20. Caitlin says:

    Wow, I commend you on your impressive scaling. I was just left with lots of remnants, which as you probably know = mindless snacking. Love the in-process photos.

  21. Lorraine E says:

    Jude this looks amazing! And well done with the scaling too. I would be over the moon if mine looked a fraction like yours!

  22. dessert girl says:

    Wow! That looks amazing!

  23. Peter says:

    Jude, this is shear awesomeness and I’m bookmarking this for next year.

  24. Susan says:

    Quite, QUITE lovely! Mint is a perfect partner for chocolate in a December dessert.

  25. rainbowbrown says:

    Man you sure do know how to make pretty food. I bet it didn’t taste less than ethereal either – mint compliments sound perfect.

  26. Jo says:

    hi jude, another fantastic creation you’ve come up with. Great job and love the flavours, presentation and pictures. Have a great new year.

  27. raquel says:

    What a great idea to set it on a chocolate biscuit! And your log looks fabulous and yummy. Awesome!!!

  28. Soma says:

    This is sooo elegant! with all that flavor ( I loved that addition of mint), I really feel like having some now.

  29. Hannah says:

    Oh, why didn’t I think of mint?? Chocolate and mint has practically been the flavor of the month for me, and now I wish I could redo my yule log! Yours sounds so delicious.

  30. Vibi says:

    What a beautiful and perfect outcome, Jude!
    Bravo, Bravo! I’m amazed!

  31. [eatingclub] vancouver || js says:

    Beautiful log! Of course I love the chocolate and mint flavour combo.

  32. Christie @ fig&cherry says:

    Fantastic first photo! Well done, you’ve done a brilliant job with this very difficult recipe ;)

  33. Mrs Ergül says:

    Another artpiece! Can I find out how are you able to control how much the icing drips down on the side? I mean is it not runny enough for it to run right down the sides? I like how you did yours!

  34. Aparna says:

    Love the unusual presentation and also that the chocolate covers just a part of the log. Looks so artistic.

    Best wishes for the festive season and a Happy New Year.

  35. Baking Soda says:

    This is a lovely, personal very modern presentation! I love it! Especially the mint flavouring. Good thinking.

  36. sweetbird says:

    As always, you are lovely. You really should try out the dacquoise, though. I think it was by far the best part.

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  38. Meeta says:

    How superbly delicious Jude! You always make the challenges wonderfully unique. This is no exception!
    Wishing you and your family a happy new year!

  39. grace says:

    this is some fabulous work, and your choice of flavors cannot be topped. bravo, jude!

  40. PG says:

    what an amazing combination of ingredients! lovely! It also looks so beautiful! wishing you a Very Happy New Year!

  41. Dana McCauley says:

    what a sensational beauty shot! Great work!

  42. I feel like I just ran a marathon… — Sugared Ellipses . . . says:

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  43. bee says:

    what gorgeousness!!! here’s wishing you and your loved ones a fantastic 2009, dear jude.

  44. Natashya says:

    You are the master, Jude!
    I think I am falling in love….
    Have a wonderful New Year!

  45. clumbsycookie says:

    I LOVE your thick glaçage! And chocolate and mint are just wonderful together!

  46. chop chop a to z says:

    WOW! This is amazing! Actually I have looked for this mouse cake pan for a while. Now I know what it is called in English :) Thanks so much.

  47. Amy says:

    So lovely – chocolate and mint is such a classic flavour but here it seems so modern. Simply beautiful.

    Amy

  48. noobcook says:

    they looked amazing, and so perfect for this time of the year =)

  49. Heather says:

    Wow, I have everything needed to make this already in my kitchen! Except the patience of a saint (your name isn’t Jude for nothing).

    Gorgeous, and I’d wreck that thing with a fork.

  50. Elizabeth - Cake or Death? says:

    I LOVE the look of your log. It’s probably my favorite one so far! Simple, modern, and classy. I also love the chocolate-mint flavor combo–definitely my favorite.

  51. Mary says:

    Wow! Absolutely spectacular! Way to go-and mint chocolate is always, always, always a winner! :)

  52. Esi says:

    I love chocolate and mint together. This is a really beautiful log and great that you were able to scale the measurements to fit your mold. I kept snacking on the extra dacqouise and praline.

  53. Y says:

    Looks beautiful! I like how you utilised the glaze :)

  54. Erik - Baking in Oregon says:

    Nice job on this month’s challenge. I like your choice of mint, my favorite flavor this time of year. I also like your take on the assembly and presentation. Well done.

  55. Ulrike says:

    Using scales rocks, your log looks very elegant.

    Best wisches for 2009!

    Ulrike from Küchenlatein

  56. Brianna says:

    Stunning Jude! I love the chocolate and mint together and your presentation is beautiful. Happy Holidays!

  57. Olga says:

    Mint and chocolate sounds like an excellent combination! Your yule log is beautiful!

  58. Susan at Sticky,Gooey,Creamy,Chewy says:

    It is just beautiful, Jude! I am so impressed that you were able to make such a perfect buche in that tiny mold! Fabulous!

  59. Lesley says:

    Oh absolutely beautiful. Just so lovely and neat. Love how you made it.

  60. Alexa says:

    Lovely rendition of the DB buche… It looks so pretty and delicious. I had to skip the event. After two birthdays and too many end of the year treats, we were all sweetened out. Yours is stunning!

  61. Spike says:

    I love the chocolate dripping over the top!

  62. JennyBakes says:

    Lovely look and I bet the mint was nice!

  63. bex says:

    I love the long skinny presentation. The drizzle looks divine! Mmmm chocolate mint.

  64. Kevin says:

    Nice looking yule log!

  65. Elizabeth says:

    mmmm mmmm chocolate and mint! What a gorgeous log!

  66. jillian says:

    This look perfectly done! I just love the thought of mint and chocolate.

  67. My Sweet & Saucy says:

    Fantastic job! All the time seems worth it!

  68. Barbara says:

    I love the way you just drizzled the icing! I also love all the wonderful cooking supplies you have!

  69. Jaden, Steamy Kitchen says:

    What a gorgeous creation! Wow – I’m so wishing I could have a bite.

  70. Faery says:

    Your log is GORGEOUS, elegant and looks so yummy too.Ilove the the shape and decorations.
    Happy New Year Jude :)

  71. BC says:

    Were you really happy with the mint flavour? I’d like to try that flavouring since it would be perfect with chocolate.

  72. Natalie says:

    Wow :O yours looks so elegant, I bet the mint was delcious…wish I had thought of that earlier hehe!!

  73. Mandy says:

    Wonderful presentation of the yule log, Jude! I love to incorporate mint in my baked goods this time of year too.

  74. Laura Rebecca says:

    What a BEAUTIFUL log! I love your interpretation of the recipe.

  75. MyKitchenInHalfCups says:

    Awe. No way can I keep up with you Jude!
    Love that you put it on terra firma!

    Your angle food looks gorgeous too. I’m one who loves it!

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  77. Madam Chow says:

    Egads, it’s gorgeous. Mine is rather . . . lumpy, but very tasty!

  78. linda says:

    Wonderful take on the Yule log, love the flavours you used! Great idea the terra firma.

  79. pigpigscorner says:

    This looks amazing! Happy New Year!

  80. Cheryl says:

    looks beautiful!

  81. Mrs Ergül – I kept a double boiler nearby to thin it out, but not too much. I was just guessing based on how it fell from the spatula.

    BC – Yup! The mint worked quite nicely for me. It would have tasted flat if it was all chocolate.

    Thanks guys! It was a lot of work but I’ll definitely make another one again.

  82. Marc @ NoRecipes says:

    What a fantastic take on this classic! Nicely done!

  83. Sunshinemom says:

    My kitchen is a picture of mess but somehow yours gives me an impression of a clean perfect kitchen!! Delightful pictures and stunning presentation!

  84. Apron Straitjacket says:

    all I can say is “Stunning”!

  85. Vera says:

    Jude, your log is gorgeous! Very Happy New Year!

  86. Jaime says:

    wow, i love what you did with this challenge. so elegant

  87. Madinat says:

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!! for including info on the MOLD you used. i kept wondering what weird type of pan you guys were using, now i know!!!

    sweet cake!

  88. brindusa says:

    Hello

    I want to make this recipe, but I don’t understand: For the Mint Crème Brûlée Insert you use 16 g of eggyolk. How many eggyolks does this mean?

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    Some really nice and useful information on this site, as well I think the pattern contains excellent features.

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    Virtually all of the commentary on this site dont make sense.

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