Yule Log

modified from Chocolate Roll in the Fanny Farmer Cookbook


  • 10 eggs, separated
  • 2 + 1/2 c confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350F [180C]
  2. Line two 10.5 x 15.5" jellyroll pan with wax paper or foil & butter it.
  3. Beat the egg yolks until they are pale & thick; set aside.
  4. Sift the sugar & cocoa together onto a piece of wax paper.
  5. Beat the egg whites until they are foamy; add the salt & continue to beat until they hold soft peaks.
  6. Fold the sugar & cocoa into the whites.
  7. Gently fold 1/3 of the egg white mixture into the yolks, then lightly fold in the remaining whites.
  8. Spread evenly in the pan and bake about 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
  9. Turn the cake out onto a clean kitchen towel.
  10. Let cool about a minute, then remove the wax paper or foil and trim off any crisp edges.
  11. Roll the cake up with the towel from the long side, like a jellyroll, and let it cool.

    Assembling the Yule Log

  1. Unroll logs and fill with with white buttercream frosting, or whipped cream.
  2. Roll one log, and add the second at the edge of the filled spiral of the first, making a nice fat log.
  3. Trim off the ends (a) to make smooth & even and (b) so the proportion is pleasing.
  4. Take a bit of the stuff you've trimmed off [this should be about 3" or so, at minimum] & roll it into a smaller bit about 1.5" in diameter.
  5. After the big log is frosted, take the branch stub & cut it at an angle, and "glue" it into place near the top of the log, frost it completely [this is a bit tricky; you might want to use your fingers to paint the frosting on].



  • 4 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • about 7.5 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 6-8 Tbsp. cocoa powder
  • opt dash salt


  1. Beat till a bit fluffy; spread on cake.
  2. When frosting the thing, use a small spatula and broad strokes to slather on chocolate frosting to resemble bark.
  3. Garnish cake with holly, greenery and meringue mushrooms; meringue mushroom caps, cut in half, look really cool stuck on to look like bracket fungus.
  4. Dust the top of the roll with more confectioners' sugar sifted through a strainer. Although it makes sense to sprinkle on the powdered sugar "snow" right away, if it has to sit under plastic wrap overnight, the "snow" will, in fact, "melt" & have to be renewed before serving.