Monday is our Christmas lunch at the bowling alley. Usually quite a lot of fun except I have to control myself. This season is bad for anyone with weight problems. People tend to say "let yourself go, it's only once a year" but they say the same thing for birthdays, Easter, etc. etc. and if one let oneself go every time, I dread to imagine the result.
For my Saturday dinner party, I cooked Braised Paprika Chicken. Not as popular as I hoped, but I had quite a lot of the sauce left over as well as the rice I served with it. Sunday supper I amalgamated the two and it was delicious. The Convent Eggs went down well on Saturday. Haven't made them for a while and had forgotten how good they were. I cheated with dessert and bought some mini cheesecake cupcakes which were good. Getting lazy in my old age. One day this week, probably Wednesday, I have to make my mincemeat pie/tart. It seems I will have at least 2 if not 3 things for desserts on Boxing Day.
I thought this sounded like a wonderful recipe although I suspect not many people would take the time to make it. I know I would try if I had a family to feed, it would probably be delicious.
Gingerbread Bûche de Noël
In this festive recipe, Dorie Greenspan reinterprets the classic French bûche de Noël, a Christmas cake fashioned to look like a Yule log. Instead of the usual chocolate cake filled with ganache, she bakes a fragrant lightly spiced sponge cake and fills it with pecan cream cheese filling, while billowing marshmallow frosting evokes a snowdrift. It’s a project to make and can take the better part of a day. Or split it up and make the components over a few days. Either way it’s time well spent. There’s no holiday dessert more spectacular than this.
FOR THE PRALINE:
1 cup/120 grams pecan halves or pieces
⅓ cup/70 grams granulated sugar
FOR THE CAKE:
4 tablespoons/60 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled, more for buttering parchment
¾ cup/100 grams all-purpose flour
¼ cup/30 grams cornstarch, sifted
¾ teaspoon/4 grams groundcinnamon
¾ teaspoon/4 grams ground ginger
¼ teaspoon/1 gram fine sea salt
¼ teaspoon/1 gram black pepper
6 large eggs
¾ cup/150 grams packed light brown sugar
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting and rolling
FOR THE FILLING:
8 ounces/225 grams cream cheese, at room temperature
8 tablespoons/115 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
Pinch of fine sea salt
½ teaspoon/3 grams groundcinnamon
2 teaspoons/10 milliliters vanilla extract