Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood's Christmas baking recipes (2024)

Mary Berry's Bûche de Noël

The French Christmas log, suitable for dessert or with coffee.

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

Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood's Christmas baking recipes (1)

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 theparchment 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.

Paul Hollywood's Christmas buns

Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood's Christmas baking recipes (2)

full-fat milk 300ml
unsalted butter 40g, softened
strong white bread flour 500g, plus extra for dusting
fine salt 10g
instant yeast 10g
medium egg 1, lightly beaten

For the filling
unsalted butter 25g, melted
soft brown sugar 75g
ground cinnamon 2 tsp
dried cranberries 100g
dried apricots 100g, chopped

For the glaze
apricot jam 75g

For the lemon icing
icing sugar 100g
zest of ½ lemon finely grated
water 1 tbsp

Warm the milk and butter in a saucepan until the butter melts and the mixture is lukewarm.

Tip the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the salt to one side of the bowl and the yeast to the other. Add the milk mixture and the egg and stir together with your hands to make a rough dough. You may need to add a little extra flour.

Tip the dough on to a generously floured work surface and begin to knead. Keep kneading for 5–10 minutes. Work through the initial wet stage until the dough starts to form a soft, smooth skin.

When your dough feels smooth and silky, put it into a lightly oiled large bowl. Cover with a tea towel and leave to rise until at least doubled in size – at least 1 hour, but it's fine to leave it for 2 or even 3 hours.

Line a deep-sided baking tray or roasting dish with baking parchment or silicone paper.

Tip the dough out on to a floured surface and, without knocking it back [deflating it], roll it out to a rectangle about 5mm thick. Tack down the edge closest to you (as this will allow you to pull and tighten the dough as you roll, which gives a nice tight swirl). Brush the surface all over with the melted butter, then sprinkle over the brown sugar, cinnamon and dried fruits. Roll the dough up into a tight cylinder and cut it into 9 slices. Place these, cut side up, in the baking tray or roasting dish, leaving a little space between each slice.

Cover the dough with a tea towel and set aside to rise for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat your oven to 190C/gas mark 5.

Bake the buns for 20-25 minutes, or until risen and golden brown. Warm the apricot jam with a splash of water, sieve and brush over the hot buns to glaze, set aside to cool on a wire rack.

When the buns are cool, mix the ingredients for the lemon icing to make a smooth icing and trickle across the top of the buns.

Mary Berry's classic Christmas cake

Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood's Christmas baking recipes (3)

For the cake
raisins 175g
glacé cherries 350g, halved, rinsed, thoroughly dried and quartered
currants 500g
sultanas 350g
brandy 150ml, plus extra for feeding
zest of 2 oranges finely grated
butter 250g, softened
light muscovado sugar 250g
eggs 4
black treacle 1 tbsp
blanched almonds 75g, chopped
self-raising flour 75g
plain flour 175g
mixed ground spice 1½ tsp

To finish and decorate
apricot jam 3 tbsp, sieved and warmed
icing sugar to dust
almond paste 675g
royal icing 1 recipe quantity, below

For the royal icing to cover a 23cm cake
egg whites 3
icing sugar 675g, sifted
lemon juice 3 tsp
glycerine 1½ tsp

Put all the dried fruit in a container, pour over the brandy and stir in the orange zest. Cover with a lid and leave to soak for three days, stirring daily.

Grease and line a 23cm deep round tin with a double layer of greased greaseproof paper. Preheat the oven to 140C/gas mark 1.

Measure the butter, sugar, eggs, treacle and almonds into a very large bowl and beat well. Add the flours and ground spice and mix thoroughly until blended. Stir in the soaked fruit. Spoon into the prepared cake tin and level the surface.

Bake in the centre of the preheated oven for about 4-4½ hours or until the cake feels firm to the touch and is a rich golden brown. Check after 2 hours, and if the cake is a perfect colour, cover with foil. A skewer inserted into the centre of the cake should come out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin.

When cool, pierce the cake at intervals with a fine skewer and feed with a little extra brandy. Wrap the completely cold cake in a double layer of greaseproof paper and again in foil and store in a cool place for up to 3 months, feeding at intervals with more brandy. (Don't remove the lining paper when storing as this helps to keep the cake moist.)

To decorate: stand the cake upside down, flat side uppermost, on a cake board which is 5cm larger than the size of the cake. Brush the sides and the top of the cake with the warm apricot jam.

Liberally dust a work surface with icing sugar then roll out the almond paste to about 5cm (2in) larger than the surface of the cake. Keep moving the almond paste as you roll, checking that it is not sticking to the work surface. Dust the work surface with more icing sugar as necessary.

Carefully lift the almond paste over the cake using a rolling pin. Gently level and smooth the top of the paste with the rolling pin, then ease the almond paste down the sides of the cake, smoothing it at the same time. If you are careful, you should be able to cover the cake with no excess paste to trim but, if necessary, neatly trim excess from the base of the cake with a small sharp knife. Cover the cake loosely with baking parchment and leave for a few days to dry out before icing.

To make the royal icing: whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until they become frothy. Mix in the sifted icing sugar a tablespoonful at a time. You can do this with a hand-held electric whisk but keep the speed low.

Stir in the lemon juice and glycerine and beat the icing until it is very stiff and white and stands up in peaks.

Cover the surface of the icing tightly with clingfilm and keep in a cool place until needed.

To ice the cake: spread the royal icing evenly over the top and sides of the cake with a palette knife. For a snow-peak effect, use a smaller palette knife to rough up the icing.

Leave the cake loosely covered overnight for the icing to harden a little, then wrap or store in an airtight container in a cool place until needed.

Instead of covering with almond paste and royal icing, you could simply brush sieved, warmed apricot jam over the top of the cake, and then arrange glacé fruits and nuts over the jam. Brush again with jam.

Preparing ahead
Prepare the fruit and soak in sherry three days ahead. Make the cake and wrap or store in an airtight container. Store in a cool place for up to three months. You could also freeze the cake before decorating, for up to three months; defrost at room temperature.

Paul Hollywood's panettone

Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood's Christmas baking recipes (4)

strong white flour 500g
salt 7g
caster sugar 50g
instant yeast 14g sachet
warm milk 140ml
medium eggs 5
unsalted butter 250g, softened
dried cherries 120g
dried sultanas 120g
dried currants 120g
whole blanched almonds 100g

Put the flour, salt, sugar, yeast, milk and the eggs in the bowl of a table mixer fitted with a dough hook.

Begin by mixing slowly on number 2 for 2 minutes then move up to number 4 and mix for a further 6-8 minutes until you have a soft dough.

Add the softened butter and mix for another 4-5 minutes. Remember to scrape down the bowl periodically to ensure that the dough mixes well. It will be very soft. Add the dried fruit and nuts. Mix until all incorporated.

Tip the dough into a bowl, cover and chill overnight or for 7 hours until the dough has hardened and you are able to shape it.

Prepare the panettone tin by painting the inside with a pastry brush in an upward motion and chilling it. Repeat this once more.

Remove your panettone dough from the fridge. Knock back the dough, shape into a ball and place in the tin.

Leave to prove in the fridge for a further 6 hours.

Heat the oven to 190C/gas mark 5. When the panettone is risen, bake for 20-25 minutes then bake for a further 35 mins on 150C/gas mark 2 or until a skewer comes out clean, bearing in mind the sugar and butter in the dough will make it take on colour before it is actually fully baked. Remove the panettone from the tin and allow to cool.

Paul Hollywood's mince pies

You just can't beat a classic mince pie, still warm from the oven. I make mine nice and deep in a muffin tin rather than a shallow bun tin, to ensure plenty of filling in every mouthful. If you make your own mincemeat, by all means use it. As here, I often buy a good-quality ready-made mincemeat and enhance it with some lemon zest and added fresh fruit.

Makes 12
For the pastry
plain flour 165g, plus extra for dusting
ground almonds 25g
unsalted butter 120g, chilled and cubed
caster sugar 55g
medium egg 1

butter for greasing
flour for dusting
egg 1, beaten with a splash of milk (eggwash) for glazing

For the filling
mincemeat 410g
satsumas 2, peeled and segmented,
(or use a tin of mandarin orange segments 310g, drained)
dessert apple 1, unpeeled, cored and finely chopped

zest of 1 lemon finely grated

To finish
caster or icing sugar for sprinkling

First make the pastry, leaving at least three hours to chill it. Stir the flour and ground almonds together in a large bowl, then add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture looks like crumbs. Stir in the sugar.

Break in the egg and work into the mixture with your fingers, bringing it together to form a soft dough. Tip the dough on to a lightly floured work surface and shape it into a ball. Flatten with your fingers to a disc and wrap in cling film. Chill.

Put the mincemeat into a bowl. Add the mandarin or satsuma segments, chopped apple and lemon zest. Stir well, cover and leave to macerate for several hours or overnight.

Heat your oven to 200C/gas mark 6. Lightly butter a 12-hole muffin tin. Roll out your sweet pastry thinly on a lightly floured surface, to a 2-3mm thickness. Don't worry if the pastry breaks or sticks, just press it together and re-roll. With a 10cm pastry cutter, cut 12 discs and use these to line the muffin tins. Use a 7.5–8cm cutter to cut 12 smaller discs for the pie lids. Re-roll your pastry as necessary to cut enough discs.

Put about 2 teaspoons of the mincemeat into each pastry case. Brush the edges of the smaller discs with eggwash and place over the mincemeat. Press the pastry edges together with your fingertips to seal.

Brush the mince pies with a little more eggwash and sprinkle with a little caster sugar. Make a hole in the top of each pie with a small, sharp knife or the tip of a skewer.

Bake for about 20 minutes until golden brown and bubbling. Carefully remove the mince pies from the tins and leave on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm or cold, dusted with a little more caster sugar or icing sugar.

Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood's Christmas baking recipes (2024)
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