Yesterday, 6th December was a very important day for kids in Belgium (and Netherlands). Yesterday was the day that Sinterklaas (Saint Nicholas) would come from Spain on a steamboat with his black assistant Zwarte Piet (Black Pete) and climb through the chimney with a bag of presents, and they would leave (maybe also by steamboat?) after they have deposited their presents for the kids. Only "brave kindjes" (not brave as in English, but well-behaved as in Dutch) will get a "cadeautje" (present) from De Sint.
Last night, I specially baked and decorated a Christmas Log Cake with Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet (unfortunately he is white instead of black since I bought white chocolate!) so that my boy can bring to school this morning on 7 Dec, since today is his last day in school before he goes on long vacation with mama. And I also bought some smurf speculaas for all the kids in his class. Smurfs, by the way, originate from Belgium, and speculaas/speculoos is a typical gingerbread type of spice biscuit in Belgium and Netherlands.
But the weather forecast has already warned yesterday that there will definitely be a major snowstorm today starting from early morning, in fact the whole country will be greeted by inches of snow the moment we wake up. So it will be quite a humongous task for my hubby who has to conquer slippery, snow-covered, bumpy roads in order to bring an excited boy plus a delicate cake to school. I wonder if the cake will be well-received by the kids? Can't wait to hear the story from my son... :)
[Updated on 29 Dec 2012]
Finally I can afford to set aside half an hour of my tightly-packed schedule in Singapore to update the christmas log recipe, I am afraid that if I happen to forget updating the recipe, it will remain a mystery, and this won't do justice to the blogger who so kindly shared the recipe with the rest of us. ;p
Anyway, here it is. This christmas log cake recipe was adapted from Grace Kitchen Corner. I happen to have a copy of the same recipe book 孟老师的美味蛋糕卷 so I also referred to the original recipe in that book for reference. I made 2 sponge cakes, based on the sponge cake recipe and I cut them into 3 portions each, so that I got 6 sheets of sponge cakes. Then I spread some apricot marmalade jam onto the sponge cakes and rolled them up one by one just like a tree log. The white chocolate figurines were bought from ALDI supermarket in Belgium, they cost only 1.99 euro for 1 big bag! The Swiss Meringue Chocolate Buttercream was adapted from Baking Library, and the tree bark effect was achieved by using a fork to make imprints on the frosting. Just a small note, I realised that the chocolate buttercream melted too quickly even under (winter) room temperature of 20 degrees celsius, so I am doubtful if it is suitable for tropical weather like Singapore. In fact, I had to put the chocolate frosting and the cake outside in the cold (freezing zero!) a couple of times to harden it.
I am submitting this to Aspiring Bakers #26 - Creative Christmas Motive Bakes hosted by Alan of Travellingfoodies.