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5 from 1 vote

Yule Log Cake

This tasty yule log cake recipe features a delicate chocolate sponge cake wrapped around a silky cream cheese filling and covered in whipped chocolate ganache. It’s festive enough to be the centerpiece at your holiday table!
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time1 hr 12 mins
Yields: 12 servings
Calories: 501
Author: Jen Sobjack

Ingredients

For the cake

For the filling

For the frosting

  • 8 ounces (226g) (226 g) semisweet chocolate finely chopped
  • 1 cups (240ml) (240 ml) heavy cream
  • sugared rosemary*
  • sugared cranberries*

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 17x12-inch jelly roll pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Lightly grease the parchment paper as well.
  • Using a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or handheld electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar together in medium speed until pale, about 7 minutes. 
  • In a separate bowl, stir the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt together. Add it to the egg mixture and gently fold everything together.
  • In another small bowl, whisk the yogurt, oil, and vanilla together. Add it to the egg mixture and gently fold it all together, scraping the bottom of the bowl to fully incorporate.
  • Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the cake springs back when touched. Take care to not overbake the cake or it will dry out and be impossible to roll without breaking.
  • Cool on a wire rack for 3 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake then turn the cake out onto a tea towel that has been generously dusted with confectioners' sugar. Remove the parchment paper and generously dust the top of the cake with more confectioners' sugar. Starting with one of the short sides, roll the cake in the towel and cool completely. 

Make the filling

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a handheld electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes.
  • Beat in the butter until well combined. Add the confectioners' sugar, vanilla, and salt. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy.
  • Carefully unroll the cake and spread the filling over the surface. Reroll the cake without the towel, and place seam side down on a large serving platter. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate while you make the frosting. 

Make the frosting

  • Place chocolate in a medium-size heatproof bowl. 
  • In a small sauce pan, bring the cream to a simmer over medium-high heat. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk together until the smooth.
  • Refrigerate the ganache for 15 minutes, until it has cooled.
  • Transfer the ganache to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium-high for 5-8 minutes until the ganache is whipped and spreadable.
  • Trim 3 inches off one end of the cake diagonally. Use ganache to attach the section at an angle on the side of the cake roll. 
  • Spread the remaining ganache all over the cake and use a small offset spatula to make a bark-like pattern all over the cake. Decorate with sugared cranberries and sugared rosemary.

Make ahead tip

  • The cake can be prepared through step 7. Refrigerate the rolled up cake for up to 1 day.
  • The filling can be made 1 day in advance. Cover and store in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before using.
  • The frosting can also be made up to 2 days in advance. Prepare through step 3, cover, and refrigerate. When ready to use, let stand at room temperature 1-2 hours then continue with step 4.
  • The baked and filled cake can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before adding the frosting. Frost up to 4 hours of serving.
  • Fully filled and frosted cake can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

Notes

*To make sugared rosemary & sugared cranberries - Bring 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup water to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes. Place 1 cup granulated sugar in a shallow dish. Dip 8 rosemary branches in the syrup then roll in sugar. Let dry for 10 minutes before using. Repeat with 1/4 cup cranberries.
Slightly adapted from Bake from Scratch