Xmas Time in lockdown

This 2020 will be an year to remember. It’s the same story as my latest posts back in the spring, when I celebrated my 30th bday during the first lockdown or I challenged myself to try one recipe per day. Now, it’s the second COVID-19 wave, so we are again into lockdown for the Xmas break, but at least this time I am back in the Bel Paese so can enjoy Xmas with my family.

I’ve been off work since a week so what else could I do when you can’t go out nor meet with friends? Baking of course!
This time, the baking challenge I put myself in was to learn how to bake a handmade Panettone, the typical Italian fluffy sweetbread we have as dessert during Xmas. Besides baking, some proper workout sessions are helping to keep a bit in shape since Natale in Italia means mangiare tanto (=eating a lot). And in between baking cookies and trying out Panettone recipes, I also had time to work a bit on my music, another big passion of mine. 
In this quite relaxed-and-chill cocktail of things I love doing, well, I eventually figured out how to bake Panettone without spending the typical 3 days of preparation, as the original recipe wants. Taking inspiration from a recipe on the Internet and doing my try-outs, I came up with an easy way to bake panettone that takes you a little less than a day to prepare. Still, quite some prep time but it is totally worth!

Panettone 3

If you want to try other (faster) Xmas sweet recipes, have a look at the latest posts of the Yule Log, the Xmas cookies with raisins and cinnamon (for the recipe in Italian, click here) or the Swedish Lussekatter (for the recipe in Italian, click here).

Panettone (fast recipe)


For the dough
550 gr Manitoba flour
100 gr sugar
150 ml water
100 gr butter
5 gr salt
15 gr fresh yeast ( or 5 gr instant dried yeast)
2 eggs
1 yolk
1 orange zest
1 lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla extra (o vanilla powder)
180 gr raisins

For the icing
1/2 egg white
20 gr almond flour
5 gr corn starch
25 gr sugar
Pearl sugar
Powdered sugar

Additionally, you need:
kitchen machine (alternatively you can prepare the dough by hand)
1 Paper panettone mold 750gr
2 knitting needles or the specific panettone skewers


Prepare the dough

In the bowl of a kitchen machine, put the flour, crumbled yeast, sugar, butter (chopped in pieces), vanilla, the eggs, the yolk, orange zest, lemon zest and half of the water. Stir for a few minutes using the k-beater. Then, add the remaining water and salt. Knead with the dough hook for about 15-20 minutes. Make sure to remove the dough from the hook every 7-10 minutes.

Next, add the raisins, which you had previously let soak in hot water and then dry with some kitchen paper. Stir the dough using slow speed, making sure the raisins are well incorporate in the dough. 



Remove the dough from the bowl and knead the dough for a few minutes using your hands. You might do this on a floured workspace. The dough should be very soft and still sticky. Cup your hands around the dough to round the ball, place it into a big bowl and wrap it with kitchen film. Let it rise for 3 hours in a warm place (it should triple its size). Usually, I pre-heat the oven at 50°, then I switch the oven, leave the light on and place the bowl on the bottom.

Then, knead the panettone again with your hands and place it into the paper panettone mold. Let it rise in the oven until the panettone dough is above the mold of about 1-2 cm.


Prepare the icing

In the meantime, prepare the icing. Stir the egg white with the almond flour, the corn starch and the sugar. Then, brush gently the icing on top of the panettone, add some almonds, pearl sugar and powder sugar.


Bake & cool down

Bake the panettone in the bottom part of (pre-heated 185°/static mode) oven for about 45 minutes. If after 30 minutes it’s already brown-colored, you can cover it with aluminum foil. 

Let cool the panettone completely suspended by the knitting needles in a large pot.

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