Panettone is a light fluffy sweet bread studded with candied fruit, and all across Italy, it is a quintessential dessert during the Christmas holidays.

Serves
6-8

Preparation

25min

Cooking

1hr
15min

Skill level

Mid
By
Average: 4.5 (4 votes)
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Ingredients

  • 5 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1¼ cup (300 ml) warm water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 5½ cups plain (all-purpose) flour
  • ½ tsp (2.5 ml) salt, divided
  • 4 large eggs
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 3 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla extract
  • 285 g (1¼ cups) butter, melted
  • 1 cup dried apricots, finely chopped
  • 1 cup shelled pistachios, toasted
  • 2 tbsp + 1 tsp (45 ml) butter, for baking

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.

Instructions

Yeast activation time: 10 minutes

Resting time: 2 Hours + 6 hours

1. Dissolve yeast in ¼ cup (60 ml) of the warm water with 1 tbsp (15 ml) sugar. Leave for 10 minutes until frothy.

2. In a large bowl, combine ½ cup (120 ml) of the flour and a ¼ tsp salt. Add yeast mixture and combine until a sticky ball is formed. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rest for 2 hours.

3. In a small pan, heat the remaining sugar and water to create a simple syrup. Transfer the syrup to a bowl, whisk in eggs and egg yolks, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Whisk until mixture becomes thick and fluffy. 

4. Add remaining flour to a large bowl. Make a well in the flour, then fill with remaining salt and melted butter. Place the risen ball of dough in the well, then work to combine, pulling as much flour in as you need. Add the egg mixture to the bowl, then work in with the remaining flour. Knead for several minutes, until the dough is shiny and elastic. Knead in the apricots and pistachios.

5. Shape dough into a loaf and place in a large panettone mold. (If your loaf is too big for one mold, you may have to divide it into two molds). Using a knife, cut a very shallow cross shape into the top of the loaf. Set loaf aside to rise for 6 hours.

6. Preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F).

7. Put dollops of the unmelted butter all around the surface of the panettone, then place in the oven on the middle rack. Bake for 60 minutes, then reduce heat to 160°C (320°F) for 15 minutes, or until crust is golden and you can insert a toothpick into the middle and it comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.