Triple Chocolate Yule Log

A gluten-free, top-8 allergy-free, and vegan yule log? Yes, please. This one features a rich chocolate truffle mousse inside chocolate sponge cake topped with a creamy buttercream. A typical yule log recipe includes a lot of eggs and little fat, lending itself to the texture typical of a jelly roll sponge. Using the right combination of flours, baking powder, a bit of xanthan gum, and just enough oil to make up for the amount in the eggs helps deliver the same result.

For a variation, add grated orange zest to the filling, or spread a thin layer of raspberry jam on top of the filling before rolling. I originally developed this recipe for Allergic Living‘s 2014 holiday newsletter.

Festive Holiday Yule Log1

Triple Chocolate Yule Log

   

For the cake:
1/2 cup icing sugar, for dusting the towel and for decoration
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/4 cup arrowroot flour
2 tablespoons quinoa flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I like Hershey’s Dark)
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened nondairy milk
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1 tablespoon coconut oil, plus more for oiling the pan
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons cider vinegar

For the filling:
1 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
8 oz (226 grams) nondairy semi-sweet chocolate chips

For the frosting:
1/2 cup nondairy buttery spread, such as Earth Balance
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 to 5 tablespoons unsweetened nondairy milk
2 1/3 to 2 2/3 cups icing sugar, sifted

To make the cake, preheat the oven to 375º F. Lightly oil a 15 x 10 x 1-inch jelly-roll pan (a baking sheet with sides). Line the bottom with parchment paper. Grease the paper with coconut oil. Dust a clean dishtowel with icing sugar, laying it out flat (you will invert the hot cake onto the dishtowel immediately after baking, so you want to have this ready.

Put the sorghum flour, quinoa flour, arrowroot flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk well to combine.

Put the nondairy milk, ground flaxseed, and oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the mixture starts to steam and the oil is melted, whisk well to combine. Pour the mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer.

Add the sugar and vanilla to the nondairy milk mixture. Beat on high for about 2 minutes, until well combined. Turn the speed of the mixer to low. Add the flour mixture, beating until just mixed, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Turn off the mixer and stir in the vinegar.

Spread the batter onto the prepared pan, leaving a border of about 1-inch from the sides. Bake for 9 to 12 minutes, until firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean.

Carefully invert the cake onto the dishtowel. Peel the parchment off of the top of the cake. Starting at one of the long sides, and using the towel as an aid, gently roll the cake jelly-roll style (you will be rolling the towel inside of it). Cool completely in the towel.

As the cake cools, make the filling. Put the coconut milk in a small saucepan over medium heat. Place the chocolate chips in a heat-safe bowl. Once the coconut milk is steaming (but not boiling), pour it immediately over the chocolate chips. Let stand 10 minutes, then stir until the chocolate chips are completely melted. Refrigerate for about 1 hour until cool (it should be like pudding). Transfer the mixture to the stand mixer and whip on high for about 1 minute until the texture of mousse. Put the mixture back into the refrigerator.

Once the cake is cool, remove the filling from the refrigerator and unroll the cake, removing the towel. Spread the filling evenly over the cake to about 1-inch from the edge. Reroll the cake to form a log. Place the cake, seam side down, on a serving platter. Refrigerate while making the frosting.

To make the frosting, put the buttery spread in the stand mixer. Beat on medium-high for about 3 minutes, until fluffy and smooth. Turn the mixer to low speed. Add the cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and 2 tablespoons of the non-dairy milk. Beat until well combined. Add 1 cup of the confectioners’ sugar. Beat until smooth. Alternately add the remaining confectioners’ sugar and non-dairy milk until the mixture is smooth. Turn to high speed and beat for 4 to 5 minutes, until creamy and fluffy.

Remove the cake from the refrigerator. To make a branch coming out of the side of the log, cut a 4-inch diagonal slice off one end of the cake, placing the cut side of the piece on the side of the remaining cake. Spread the frosting over the whole cake.

Use the tines of a fork to create a rustic “bark” effect in the frosting. Dust with icing sugar for “snow”. Serve at room temperature.

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Double Chocolate Buckwheat Cookies

Chocolate pairs well with just about anything—especially more chocolate! These easy cookies freeze well, making them perfect for lunches and snacks when you’re on the run. This recipe, along with these Apple Raisin Scones, was developed for Cuisine Soleil, a Canadian-based gluten-free and certified organic flour company that produces over 12 flours and a variety of mixes. Once again, I’m highlighting their buckwheat flakes, a light flake similar to quick-cooking oats, with an earthy buckwheat taste and a lot of versatility.

Double Chocolate Buckwheat Cookies

Double Chocolate Buckwheat Cookies

 

1 cup buckwheat flakes
2/3 cup sorghum flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons tapioca starch
3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/3 cup softened coconut oil (see Note)
2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup nondairy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup nondairy dark chocolate morsels

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Put the buckwheat flakes, sorghum flour, cocoa powder tapioca starch, xanthan gum, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk well to combine.

Put the coconut oil and flaxseeds in a saucepan, cooking on medium heat until the coconut oil melts. Pour it into a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the sugar, nondairy milk, and vanilla extract. Using a hand mixer or the stand mixer, beat until well emulsified. Add the flour mixer, beating until mixed. Stir in the morsels.

Scoop about 2 tablespoons worth of the cookie dough into portions on the baking sheet. Use your hands to roll each one into a ball, then flatten to about 3/4-inch thick. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, just until the tops start to firm. Cool on the baking sheets for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Note: If you don’t want the taste of coconut from the coconut oil, look for organic varieties that aren’t virgin—they have the same nutritional content without the strong flavor.

(Disclosure statement: I received monetary compensation and free product from Cuisine Soleil from a recipe development partnership. I only, however, promote and partner with companies I love and use regularly in my own kitchen. As always, all opinions and recommendations expressed are completely my own.)

Black Forest Biscotti

Are you someone who likes camping? I’m definitely not. But I know lots of folks dig it (for some reason), and portable foods to bring along are a must. These fall into that category: an easy-to-take-with-you, allergen-friendly recipe that kids’ll love for those times when they’re attending camp during these (finally) warmer months!

For National Allergen Month, I’m celebrating again with So Delicious Dairy Free to create a top 8 allergen-free, vegan recipe that everyone will love whether they’re away on the campgrounds or not. These fit the bill: they have a double dose of chocolate, are studded with dried cherries, and have an underlying creaminess from the Culinary Coconut Milk. They’re inspired by black forest cake (my favourite), which, of course, definite coincides with the great outdoors. (Get it? Forest?)

You can see my last celebration with So Delicious here, with my Banana-Tahini Caramel-Chocolate Pudding Pie.

One more thing: So Delicious Dairy Free has a cool campaign going on until May 12th called the #140Difference – The World’s Shortest Grant Application. They’re seeking people toTweet/Facebook/Instagram them their ideas for projects that protect the earth and animals, as well as ideas/programs that support those with food allergies or plant based eaters. The  best part? They’re giving away $30,000 over 3 weeks, granting awards daily. You can check out more here.

Biscotti are one of my favourite things to make–second only to cake–and these are among my top picks (hello, chocolate). They’re freezer-friendly, too, if you want to double the batch, but I can tell you they probably won’t last very long.

So Delicious - Black Forest Biscotti

Black Forest Biscotti

 

1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup teff flour
1/3 cup tapioca flour
1/3 unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably dark
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup So Delicious Original Culinary Coconut Milk, plus more as needed (about 2 tablespoons)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cup nondairy chocolate chunks
1/3 cup dried cherries (tart or sweet)
1/3 cup nondairy mini chocolate chips
2 teaspoons coconut oil

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Put the sorghum flour, teff flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk well to combine.

Put the brown sugar, 1/2 cup of the culinary coconut milk, and the vanilla extract in large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Using a handmixer or the stand mixer, beat until well combined. Add the flour mixture. Beat until the mixture begins to stick together (it might take a couple minutes), adding up to 2 tablespoons additional culinary coconut milk, as needed. Turn off the mixture and use your hands to mix in the dried cherries and chocolate chunks. The mixture will be stiff.

Transfer the mixture to the baking sheet. Divide it in half, and form each half into a log, about 3 inches wide, 8 inches long, and 1 inch high. Bake for about 30 minutes, until the top is firm to the touch. Let cool 10 minutes. Using a sharp knife, cut the logs into 1-inch slices.

Lower the temperature of the oven to 300 degrees F. Put each slice on the baking sheet, cut-side down. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn the slice over so the other cut side is on the baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until firm to the touch. The biscotti will continue to harden as it cools. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Once the biscotti is cool, put the nondairy chocolate chips and coconut oil in a small bowl. Microwave on 30 second intervals, stirring in between each one, until the chocolate has melted. Use a fork to drizzle the mixture over the top of the cooled biscotti. Cool completely before serving or storing.

(Disclosure statement: I received monetary compensation and free product coupons from So Delicious Dairy-Free for taking part in this campaign. I only, however, promote and partner with companies I love and use regularly in my own kitchen. As always, all opinions and recommendations expressed are completely my own.)