Panettone is a traditional gift given during the Christmas holidays in Italy. Studded with candied orange and raisins, and soaked in a bit of rum, its flavors befit the season perfectly and is an indulgent treat to celebrate. As most breads do, it takes extra time to make panettone. I suggest you double the batch and save a loaf for yourself to make Christmas morning French toast.
Below is my recipe for panettone. You can find this recipe and others like it in my newly published cookbook, Desserts For Every Season.
Makes one 5-inch round loaf
- 1 tablespoon plus
- 1½ teaspoons active dry yeast
- ¼ cup whole milk, warmed to about 110°F
- ¼ cup honey
- ½ cup dark spiced rum
- 1½ cups raisins
- Seeds of ½ vanilla bean
- ¾ teaspoon orange blossom water
- 3 large eggs
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
- 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- ½ cup candied orange peel, chopped
- Olive oil
- ¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, gently stir the yeast, milk, and honey with a spoon, and set aside for a few minutes.
- In a small pot, bring the rum and raisins to a simmer over low heat. Remove from the heat, stir to coat the raisins in the rum, and transfer to a small bowl. Let cool to room temperature and set aside.
- Fit the stand mixer with the hook attachment and add the vanilla, orange blossom water, eggs, egg yolk, flour, and salt to the bowl with the yeast mixture. Mix on low speed until the dough just comes together, 4 to 5 minutes.
- Add the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, and continue to mix the dough for about 4 minutes.
- Drain the excess rum from the raisins, reserving the rum, and add the raisins to the dough. Add the orange peel and continue to mix for about 3 minutes.
- Turn the dough out onto a very generously floured surface, coat the entire surface of the dough in flour, and shape into a large ball.
- Carefully place in a 5¼ by 3¾-inch paper baking cup, gently brush the top with oil, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and set on two stacked baking sheets. Place in a warm area of the kitchen to rise until doubled in size, 50 to 60 minutes.
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375°F.
- Remove the plastic wrap from the dough and bake until the dough has a deep golden color, cover the top loosely with a piece of aluminum foil, and continue to bake until the center of the loaf reaches 200°F, about 60 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let cool for 20 minutes.
- In a small bowl, whisk the reserved rum and the confectioners’ sugar together until smooth. Generously brush the glaze over the top of the loaf, continuing to glaze until all of it has soaked through.
- Let cool until just warm before serving.