One of the most enchanting times of the year is approaching, the Christmas season, and this is the period in which you want to impress everyone with your incredible skill in making fresh, delightful desserts which stimulate the senses from the very first moment they appear on the dining table, in a riot of colours and aromas. Well, get ready because you might want to eat your computer screen as soon as we tell you what we’re making today: a delicious Christmas log, decorated with chocolate and pastry cream, made with a gentle hand to create a work of art for the holidays. After selecting the best ingredients with which to make your special dessert, don’t get distracted and just be guided by our advice - for example, using icing sugar and grated coconut to create ‘snow’. Is your mouth already watering, and can’t wait until it’s finished? Well, resist: because the best seasoning for food is appetite.
Proceed as follows. For the chocolate sponge cake: separate the egg whites from the yolks and beat until stiff. Set aside. Beat the yolks with the sugar until you get a white, frothy mixture. Sift in the flour and mix with a spatula, then fold in the whites and continue to blend them in well. Finally add the cocoa powder and mix in. Preheat the oven to 180°C; prepare a baking sheet lined with baking parchment and pour in dough, levelling it well; bake for 40 minutes or so. Make a syrup with 200ml of water and 100g of sugar, bringing it to the boil and then removing from the heat: as soon as it’s cold soak the sponge cake with it and transfer to a damp tea towel. For the pastry cream: boil the milk with the vanillin; meanwhile, beat the eggs with the sugar and as soon as you have a white frothy mixture, sift in the flour beating continuously. As soon as the milk has boiled add it a little at a time to the egg, sugar and flour mixture, stirring with a whisk; then put it on a low heat, stirring constantly until it reaches the right consistency, without boiling. Allow to cool. Assemble the dessert: with a pasta cutter make a number of round ‘bases’ and then cut out strips with which you will make the sides of the finished sponge ‘cup’. Fill these containers with the pastry cream, then garnish with some melted dark chocolate to taste and sprinkle with cocoa powder or icing sugar.