This classic Italian holiday sweet bread is a cross between a coffee cake and dessert that is now served year-round the world over. Lining the muffin cups with strips of parchment makes it easy to remove the panettones after baking. You can also prepare this recipe in traditional muffin tins for a yield of 18; trim the parchment paper for the muffin cups to 2 1/2 x 6 inches, and shorten the baking time to 20 minutes.
2 packages dry yeast (about 4 1/2 teaspoons)
1 1/4 cups warm water (100° to 110°)
5 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
3/4 cup sugar
7 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh orange rind
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 1/2 cups sweetened dried cranberries
1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 tablespoons sliced almonds
How to Make It
Dissolve yeast in water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Lightly spoon 1 1/4 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add to yeast mixture, stirring with a whisk to combine. Cover; let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour.
Combine sugar, butter, rind, and salt in a large bowl; beat with a heavy-duty stand mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add eggs, beating until combined; beat in yeast mixture. Lightly spoon 4 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add 4 cups flour to egg mixture, beating at medium speed until smooth. Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 3 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel sticky). Knead in cranberries and ginger until well incorporated.
Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.)
Coat 6 (1-cup) muffin cups with cooking spray. Cut 6 (5 x 12-inch) strips of parchment paper; place paper in muffin cups to extend 3 inches from the top of the muffin cups. Divide dough evenly among the muffin cups. Lightly spray each muffin with cooking spray; sprinkle evenly with nuts. Let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size.
While muffins rise, preheat the oven to 375°.
After muffins have doubled in size, bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until muffins are lightly browned.
I love this recipe and one friend who studied at Le Cordon Bleu said they were marvelous. I have always made the smaller size muffins (18 count) and left off the almonds. They fall off before anyone can eat them.
Today I made a 1 1/2 oz. size for an upcoming buffet (count 42). The muffins are too large for a 2 or 3 bite appetizer. I will try icing with a confectioner's sugar and orange juice mixture that should finish the size off nicely.
I like this recipe. I've made it three times now and I give it away for Christmas. That said, recipe seekers should know that the texture of this bread is not like that found in the boxed imported Panettones found on sale during the holiday season. Anyone who is hoping for something similar needs to pass on this recipe.
I make this reciepe at holiday time 3-4 times. I have given this out as gifts for years now, friends, teachers at school and co-workers. It is great sliced and toasted with a little butter. Our family holiday favorite. Worth the effort in making!
I love this recipe, and am making it for Christmas gifts for the second year in a row - it got rave reviews last year. It definitely is time-consuming; I set aside the better part of a day to be at home, though I am not working the whole time. I make it just as written, though I like the other reviewers' substitution ideas....maybe next year!
One of the best panettones I have ever eaten! Delicious and delicate though it did take a lot of effort to make. I found them to be more tender and lighter if reheated for 30 seconds in the microwave before serving.
Eat Well. Lose Weight. Live Healthy. Delicious and healthy recipes customized for you!