Try this chocolate and cherry roulade, then check out out our classic yule log, bûche de noël, cherry clafoutis, black forest trifle and chocolate cherry fondants.



  • sunflower oil, for the tin
  • 175g 70% dark chocolate (we used Lindt cooking chocolate), broken into squares
  • 6 eggs
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • icing sugar, for dusting


  • 400g black cherries (fresh or frozen), pitted and chopped
  • 125g golden caster sugar
  • 1 1⁄2 tbsp cornflour
  • 1 lemon, juiced


  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 40g golden caster sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp amaretto, (optional)
  • 200ml double cream
  • 100g chestnut purée (we used Merchant Gourmet)


  • 8 maraschino cherries
  • 8 marron glacé, chopped
  • 50g dark chocolate, chilled


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4 and oil then line a 23cm x 32cm lipped swiss roll tin with baking paper.

  • STEP 2

    To make the roulade, melt the chocolate either in a bowl over a pan of just-simmering water or in a small bowl in the microwave for 45 seconds-1 minute on full power, stirring a couple of times so it melts evenly. Cool.

  • STEP 3

    Separate the eggs and whisk the whites until they are really stiff and stay in the bowl if you turn it upside down.

  • STEP 4

    In another bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar until they are thick and pale, and they leave a trail when you lift the whisk. If you do it in this order you won’t have to wash the whisk in between whisking the egg whites and then the yolks.

  • STEP 5

    Fold the cooled chocolate into the egg yolk mixture, then fold in the egg whites a few big spoonfuls at a time. When they are almost all folded in, sift over the cocoa and fold in, then add the rest of the egg whites.

  • STEP 6

    Scrape the mixture into the tin and very lightly spread into the edges, being careful not to knock out the air. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until set and firm to the touch.

  • STEP 7

    While the roulade is baking, put a slightly damp tea towel on a worksurface, then top with a clean sheet of baking paper and sift over some icing sugar.

  • STEP 8

    Flip the baked roulade over and onto the paper. Remove the tin and put another clean tea towel over the top and leave to cool. Keep the lining paper on at this stage.

  • STEP 9

    For the compote, put the black cherries, sugar and cornflour into a pan with 100ml of water and cook over a medium heat for 15 minutes or until really thick and jammy. Add the lemon juice and cool, then chill until needed.

  • STEP 10

    To make the chestnut cream, put the vanilla, sugar and amaretto, if using, into a blender and whizz until smooth. Pour in 100ml of the cream and briefly whizz again. Whip the remaining cream to soft peaks, then fold in along with the chestnut purée. Whisk again to stiff peaks.

  • STEP 11

    Carefully peel away the lining paper but keep on the paper dusted with icing sugar and position it so a short edge of the roulade is facing you. Make a shallow cut in the roulade a few centimetres in from the edge as this will help you to roll it up.

  • STEP 12

    Spread 90% of the cream over the top in an even layer, leaving a 3cm gap all the way around. Spread the compote over the top of this, again leaving a border.

  • STEP 13

    Use the baking paper to roll the roulade up into a tight roll. Transfer to a platter.

  • STEP 14

    Spoon or pipe the remaining chestnut cream on the top of the roulade and add the maraschino cherries and chopped marron glacé. Use a large knife to curl chocolate shards from the chilled chocolate and scatter over the top. Cut into slices to serve.

Find more easy yet impressive Christmas dessert ideas here

Profiterole Tower with Chocolate and Hazelnuts


Adam Bush Chef Portrait
Adam BushDeputy food editor

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