Panettone, the Italian festive cake traditionally containing dried and candied fruit has, in recent years, increasingly graced Christmas tables all over the world, as an alternative to the rich, heavy puddings that strangely often follow one of the largest meals of the year. And, back in Italy, a new generation of artisans are creating panettone with an assortment of exciting ingredients to reinvigorate this most traditional of Christmas fare.
What is panettone?
Panettone is a light, brioche-style fruit bread made from flour, butter, sugar, and citrus peel. The crumb is airy, with a yellow tinge, while the outside is baked to a toasty brown. Dome-shaped (when star-shaped it’s called pandoro), panottone undergoes a complicated leavening process similar to sourdough. Originating in Milan, panettone became particularly popular as a gift in the early 20th century when bakers began to produce them in large batches. Supermarkets, delis and department stores are packed with panettone pyramids in the run up to Christmas.
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