10 Best Christmas Desserts Old and New
Christmas is quickly approaching — what are you baking this year? Many Americans go all out on the cookie front, but no one is too stuffed during the holiday for dessert, so you need to start strategizing early.
If you celebrate Christmas and are hosting your relatives this year, will you go the traditional route and try your hand at grandma’s specialty, or will you bake this year’s sweets with new-age flair? Whichever route you choose, we can equip you with recipes no matter what your tastebuds crave.
Drawing from old traditions and hopefully creating some new ones, here are 10 of the best Christmas desserts you can serve this year when Santa Claus comes to town.
1. Buche de Noel
First is a dessert that has been enjoyed by many generations and will likely continue to be devoured for many more. Buche de Noel is one of many traditional cakes baked during Christmastime, and if you couldn’t guess from the name, it has a French origin. Though the cake dates back to the 19th century, it is still enjoyed across the globe today as a thinly rolled sponge cake filled with jam or cream and covered with some form of buttercream icing. Though there is now an influx of new and improved dessert favorites, there’s nothing like a traditional dessert to remember that good food never goes out of style.
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons instant coffee granules or crystals
Chocolate buttercream frosting
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 to 2 tablespoons hot water
- Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line 15 x 10 x 1-inch pan with foil or waxed paper; grease with shortening or cooking spray. In small bowl, beat eggs with electric mixer on high speed about 5 minutes or until very thick and lemon colored. Pour eggs into large bowl; gradually beat in 1 cup granulated sugar. Beat in 1/3 cup water and the vanilla on low speed. Gradually add flour, baking powder and salt, beating just until batter is smooth. Pour into pan, spreading batter to corners.
- Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Immediately loosen cake from edges of pan; invert onto towel generously sprinkled with powdered sugar. Carefully remove foil. Trim off stiff edges of cake if necessary. While hot, carefully roll cake and towel from narrow end. Cool on cooling rack at least 30 minutes.
- Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in preheated oven, or until the cake springs back when lightly touched. Dust a clean dishtowel with confectioners’ sugar. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and turn the warm cake out onto the towel. Remove and discard parchment paper. Starting at the short edge of the cake, roll the cake up with the towel. Cool for 30 minutes.
- In chilled medium bowl, beat all filling ingredients on high speed until stiff. Unroll cake; remove towel. Spread filling over cake. Roll up cake.
- In medium bowl, beat cocoa and butter on low speed until thoroughly mixed. Beat in powdered sugar until mixed. Beat in vanilla and enough of the hot water until frosting is smooth and spreadable.
- For tree stump, cut off a 2-inch diagonal slice from one end of cake. Attach stump to one long side using 1 tablespoon frosting. Frost cake with remaining frosting. With tines of fork, make strokes in frosting to look like tree bark. Garnish with nuts.