You know about Krampus, right? From what I can tell, Krampus is some evil Christmas goat and he has a long gross tongue that he LOVES to stick out while torturing children. (What is it with people sticking out their tongue? It’s not a good look.) Anyway, Krampus goes around stealing little boys and girls who are naughty, or something like that. And there was that movie about Krampus that came out over Christmas? Did you see it?! Christmas horror movie with Toni Collette! What could be better?!
Well, I for one would like to see a movie about Tio de Nadal (Christmas log). You’ve heard about Tio de Nadal, right?! No?
Tio de Nadal is a tradition that hails from the Catalonia region of Spain. Each family has a log, paints a face on it, gives it little legs, takes care of it (i.e., “feeds,” covers in a warm blanket). From Wikipedia, “On Christmas day or, in some households, on Christmas Eve, one puts the tió partly into the fireplace and orders it to defecate…. To make it defecate, one beats the tió with sticks, while singing various songs of Tió de Nadal.”
Why settle for Santa (or Krampus for that matter), when you could beat a log and sing songs demanding it to poop? What says “Christmas” more than that? And the song lyrics are pretty threatening. For example, “Shit, log, shit nougats, hazelnuts and mató cheese, if you don’t shit well, I’ll hit you with a stick! Shit, log!”
This last Christmas I did not celebrate the Catalonian version of the Christmas log, BUT for my first time ever, I made a Yule Log cake!
It was tiramisu flavored!
I’ve been wanting to try to make a Yule Log cake (Buche de Noel) for awhile. The log shape, the meringue mushrooms – what’s not to like?! But I really got a bee in my bonnet to make one when I was watching a cake episode of the Great British Baking Show.
The contestants had to make a rolled cake with a filling at one point. And some of them totally blew it. I mean, this one guy made cuts in his cake, thinking it would roll easier, but it went all to pot. Oh bollocks, what a cock up! (Sorry…)
Anyway. My rolled cake turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself. Scrummy, indeed! The recipe came from Gourmet magazine (RIP), posted here.
More than the cake itself, I really LOVED making and eating the meringue mushrooms.
If you haven’t made yourself meringue cookies, I recommend that you do some time. They aren’t tough to make – you just whip a bunch of egg whites with some sugar, creme of tartar, and some flavoring; spoon or pipe them onto a baking sheet; and cook at a low temperature for a couple of hours, and – poof! You have meringues!
I mean – this cake! Doesn’t it look like some forest gnomes should be sitting on it?! Or maybe that some Catalonian kids should be beating it with a stick and commanding it to poop presents?