This festive chocolate and chestnut Yule log is a great way to round off any Christmas meal.


  • For the sponge

  • 3 egg whites

  • 130g (4¾oz) golden caster sugar

  • 4 egg yolks

  • 50g (2oz) unsalted butter, melted

  • 100g (3½oz) plain flour

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 50ml (2fl oz) dark rum

  • For the chestnut cream

  • 100ml (3½fl oz) double cream

  • 400g (14oz) crème de marrons (sweet

  • chestnut purée or spread, available in

  • good supermarkets and suppliers)

  • For the chocolate glaze

  • 150g (5oz) dark chocolate, broken into

  • pieces

  • 50g (2oz) unsalted butter

  • 2 tbsp golden icing sugar

  • For the decoration

  • chocolate shavings

  • a few marrons glacés, halved

  • icing sugar


  • 1.

    Preheat the oven to 220ºC (fan 200ºC)/425ºF/gas mark 7. Cover a baking sheet with silicone paper or a silicone rubber mat.

  • 2.

    To start the sponge, beat the egg whites until stiff with an electric

  • 3.

    Hand whisk, then gradually add 50g (2oz) of the golden caster sugar.

  • 4.

    In a separate bowl, beat the egg yolks with the remaining sugar until the mixture is fluffy and white. Stir in the melted butter.

  • 5.

    Sift the flour with the baking powder into the egg yolk mixture, then fold all the ingredients together. Mix in a little of the whipped egg white, then gently fold in the remainder.

  • 6.

    Spread the mixture on to the silicone on the baking tray with a palette knife, rather like making a Swiss roll. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, but you must keep an eye on it as it cooks fast!

  • 7.

    When out of the oven, cover the sponge with a damp tea-towel to stop it drying.

  • 8.

    To make the chestnut cream, in a large bowl, using an electric hand whisk, beat the cream to soft peaks, then fold in the crème de marrons.

  • 9.

    To construct the cake, firstly soak the sponge with the dark rum, using a pastry brush. Spread the chestnut cream on to the sponge with a palette knife then, using the silicone paper or mat, gently roll the filled sponge up nice and tight. Place on a serving plate, join down, and cut the ends at an angle. Save one of these ends to use as a ‘branch’ when glazing with the chocolate glaze.

  • 10.

    Now make the chocolate glaze. Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie, tirring occasionally, then add the butter and sugar. Leave to cool down.

  • 11.

    Using a palette knife, cover the whole log with the chocolate glaze. Cover the saved end with glaze too, and stick it on top to mimic a branch.With a fork decorate all over for a wood effect. Place a few chocolate shavings and pieces of marrons glacés on top, and dust with icing sugar.

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