Bûche de Noël (Mary Berry) (Christmas)

For the sponge
large eggs 4
caster sugar 100g
self-raising flour 65g
cocoa powder 40g

For the filling
coffee essence 1 tbsp
hot milk 4 tbsp
unsweetened chestnut purée 225g
caster sugar 50g
whipping or double cream 150ml, whipped
brandy 2 tbsp

For the topping
whipping or double cream 300ml, whipped
cocoa powder to dust
holly leaves to decorate

First make the sponge. Preheat the oven to 220C/gas mark 7. Grease a 33cm x 23cm Swiss roll tin and line with baking parchment.

Whisk the eggs and sugar in a large bowl until the mixture is light and frothy and the whisk leaves a trail when lifted out. Sift the flour and cocoa into the mixture, carefully folding them in at the same time. Turn the mixture into the prepared tin and give it a gentle shake so that the mixture finds its own level, making sure that it spreads evenly into the corners.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes or until the sponge begins to shrink from the edges of the tin. While the cake is cooking, place a piece of baking parchment a little bigger than the size of the tin on to a work surface and sprinkle it with caster sugar.

Invert the cake on to the sugared parchment. Quickly loosen the parchment on the bottom of the cake and peel off. Trim the edges with a sharp knife and make a score mark 2.5cm in from one shorter edge, being careful not to cut right through. Roll up the cake firmly from the cut end, with the parchment inside, and leave to cool.

While it is cooling, make the filling. Mix the coffee essence with the milk. Sieve the chestnut purée into a bowl and beat in the coffee mixture and the sugar until the mixture is smooth. Fold the whipped cream into the chestnut purée along with the brandy.

Carefully unroll the Swiss roll, remove the parchment and spread the chestnut filling all over the cake, then re-roll. Cut a small slice off at an angle from one of the ends of the Swiss roll, place the Swiss roll on to a serving plate or board, and attach the slice to look like a branch.

Spread the whipped cream over the cake to cover completely, using a small palette knife in long strokes to give the bark effect. Dust lightly with cocoa and decorate with holly leaves.

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