A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories.
After about an hour, the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse.
“But why,” they asked.
“Because”, he said, “I can’t stand chess-nuts boasting in an open foyer.”
There you go. A Chess Nut joke.
And here you go. A fabulous Bûche de Noël With Chestnut Cream.
If you like chocolate and chestnuts, then give this elegant dessert a go. It looks so festive, too.
The sponge cake is very delicate and mine broke apart a bit when I was filling it with the chestnut cream. However, once re-rolled and covered in ganache, no one but me knew it.
Bûche de Noël With Chestnut Cream
1/2 cup plus 8 tsp golden caster sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 Tbs cocoa powder
1/2 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup finely ground almonds
1/4 tsp baking powder
3 Tbs Amaretto
Chestnut filling ingredients:
210g unsweetened chestnut purée
2 1/2 Tbs Amaretto
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 Tbs light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
125ml whipping cream
Chocolate ganache ingredients:
185ml whipping cream
2 oz butter
150g bittersweet chocolate, chopped
150g milk chocolate, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 400℉/200°C. Line a 25cm x 30cm jelly roll tin with parchment paper.
2. Beat the eggs with an electric mixer on high for 2 minutes. With motor running, add sugar 1 Tbs at a time, beating well. Continue beating for 10 minutes and beat in vanilla.
3. Sift cocoa, cornstarch, flour, ground almonds and baking powder together twice.
4. Sift half of the flour mixture over the egg mixture and fold carefully with a spatula. Sift the remaining flour mixture over and fold through again taking care so as not to beat out all of the air.
5. Carefully pour batter into the tin and smooth the top.
6. Bake for about 10 minutes or until golden and the top springs to the touch.
7. Remove from pan and invert onto a clean tea towel lined with parchment paper and dusted with confectioners’ sugar. Peel off the baking parchment and discard.
8. Brush the top of the cake with a little Amaretto. Using the tea towel to help you, carefully roll up the cake and the parchment from one long side. Place the roll on a wire rack to cool.
9. Meanwhile make the filling. Use electric mixer to beat together the chestnut purée, Amaretto, sugars and vanilla until very smooth. Whip the cream to firm peaks then fold into the chestnut mixture. Cover and chill.
10. When the cake is completely cool, carefully unroll, discarding the baking parchment and spread the chestnut cream over the top. Roll up again. Place seam side down on a serving platter and chill.
11. To make the ganache, heat the cream and butter until it just comes to the boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped chocolate until the mixture is smooth. Cover and chill for about 50 minutes.
12. When ready to ice the cake, use a serrated knife to cut, on the diagonal, about a quarter of the cake from one end of the log. Spread a little of the ganache on the cut side of the small piece of cake and stick it to one side of the log to make a small branch. Spread the rest of the ganache over the entire cake, then run a fork over to create a bark-like effect.
13. Chill overnight. Decorate with holly leaves or non-toxic berries to serve.
Recipe from Olive Magazine
This is from Mazes’ forthcoming album ‘Ores & Minerals’. I’m already intrigued just by some of the track names alone. Bodies, Dan Higgs Particle, Sucker Punched, Bite, Leominster, Skulking…
Bodies is a breezy, dance-worthy little number. Highly addictive after a few listens.