Yuletide Greetings and Happy Eatings!
Each year, we have a beautiful yule log on display in our showcase. It’s a delicious combination of traditional sponge cake, homemade buttercream icing, creamy chocolate icing, and gumpaste poinsettias. The yuletide treat has been a staple December product for more than 60 years in our bakery and remains a Christmas tradition for many families.
While we continue to produce the tasty tradition, we invite those who’ve never experienced the flavor, to come in to taste and see what this yuletide tradition is all about.
History of the Yule log
The yule log was originally a large tree cut from a family’s yard before being pulled by a mule or horse through the street. Families would march the yule log around their house three times before bringing it in. Yuletide songs of blessings were sung as in hopes for good fortune in the new year.
Only a fraction of the oversized log would fit into the fireplace, leaving the rest of it to hang in the common room of the house. Families decorated the remaining length of the log and blessed it with ceremonial spirits until the entire log fit into the fireplace. It was believed anything evil from the year could be left on the log and once burned, the bad luck accompanying it would disappear as well.
Some cultures would burn their yule log for twelve hours but it’s the Scandinavian’s who are credited with burning the log for the twelve days. This is the span between Christmas Eve until the end of Winter Solstice known as “The 12 Days of Christmas.”. Hence the popularity of the “Twelve Days of Christmas.” No matter what tradition called for on the duration of the yule log burn, one common belief remained; if the log went out too soon, bad luck would ensue.
The ashes were also used as part of the ritual. When planting day came, ashes from the yule log were sprinkled onto the fields in hopes of spreading good luck even further.
As years passed, the length of yule logs dwindled. Families chose logs that fit the entire girth of their fireplace rather than have the log stick out into their homes. The decorations and ceremony, however, did not change. In many cultures today, the yule log is still very much celebrated today.
Who celebrates with Yule Logs today?
In America and some European cultures today, yule logs are offered in a much tastier form. In Provencal, France, the tradition of burning an oversized log transferred to a celebratory eating of a delicacy on Christmas Eve. Leave it to the French to reinvent the wheel with something tasty- right?
The ‘buche de noel’, as commonly referred to, is a tightly rolled sponge cake iced in chocolate cake made to look like a log. With knobs, roots, and some sort of winter flower such as poinsettias, this sweet cake is designed to mimic the yule log tradition. With many versions of the classic cake around today-including those soaked in ‘ceremonial spirits’ like the old days, it’s clear this is a popular winter treat.
The Christmas season is full of wonderful family traditions such as decorating gingerbread houses, singing carols, and spending evenings by the fireplace…that is, when Florida remembers that it’s winter! If your yuletide traditions include a stop at your favorite family bakery, we invite you to come in and share a memory, eat a cookie, and simply enjoy the season.
As always, we thank you for being a part of our family’s dream and wish you all a very merry Christmas season.
Cinotti’s Bakery & Sandwich Shop
Tuesday – Friday:
6:00 am – 5:00 pm
6:00 am – 3:00 pm
CLOSED SUNDAY and MONDAY.
Cake Serving Guide
Tiered Cake Serving Guide
Holiday Meal Guide
Sandwich Shop Hours
Tuesday – Friday: Breakfast served until 10:30am
Cold Sandwiches served until 4:45 pm
Saturday: Breakfast served until noon
Cold Sandwiches served until 2:30
CLOSED SUNDAY and MONDAY.