Panetonne -egg bread w/raisins and candied fruit

Yield: 1 Servings

Measure Ingredient
\N \N Panettone

Baking a panettone is like baking a souffle. It rises gloriously in the oven and then deflates as it cools. Our Il Fornaio bakers were at a loss as what to do with the fallen loaves, so I introduced them to the foolproof Italian remedy: Italian bakers suspend boards pierced by a row of round holes from the ceiling. As they take the breads from the hot oven, they drop them upside down through the holes. The loaves' slightly broader bases prevent them from slipping all the way through and the breads retain their full height as they cool. Making this handsome, Christmas bread - with the dough's four long resting periods - is an all day event. Ideally the loaves are baked in high-sided panettone molds, but they are difficult to find on this side of the Atlantic. If you are not planning a trip to Italy before Christmas, use a two pound coffee can or a two quart charlotte mold or a souffle dish. This loaf tastes best the day after it is baked, so plan ahead. For the starter: 2 tsp active dry yeast ½ cup warm water (105 degrees F) ½ cup unbleached all purpose flour For the first dough: 2 Tbs unsalted butter at room temperature 4 tsp sugar 1 egg The starter ⅔ cup unbleached all purpose flour For the second dough: 4 tbs unsalted butter at room temperature ¼ cup sugar 1 whole egg 2 egg yolks 1 tsp vanilla extract 2 tsp honey Pinch of salt Grated zest of 1 orange Grated zest of 1 lemon 2 Tbs chopped candied orange rind 2 Tbs chopped candied lemon rind ½ cup raisins, soaked in hot water to cover for 30 mins & drained 1 to 1½ cups unbleached all purpose flour Additional Flour for work surface and mold Olive oil for bowl Additional Unsalted butter for mold To make the starter, in a small bowl stir the yeast into the water. Add the flour and mix vigorously with a wooden spoon for 5 minutes to form a smooth batter. Top with an airtight cover and let rest at room temperature until doubled, 30 mins to 1 hour. Once the starter is ready, begin to make the first dough. In a mixing bowl combine the butter and sugar and beat together with a sturdy wooden spoon until light, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and beat until incorporated. Stir in the risen starter, which will deflate immediately, and beat until smooth. Gradually stir in the flour and mix vigorously for 3 to 4 minutes. At this point the dough should be somewhat stiff and stick, but none-the-less smooth and elastic. Once again top with an airtight cover and let rise until doubled 3 to 5 hours.

Transfer the now-risen first dough to a large mixing bowl. It will deflate as you do. Now begin to make the second dough. In a smaller bowl combine the butter and sugar. Using a hand held mixer set on a medium speed, beat the mixture until light, about 2 minutes. Add the whole egg and egg yolks and beat until thoroughly combined. Add the vanilla, honey, salt and citrus zest and beat only until evenly mixed. Using a wooden spoon, beat the egg mixture into the first dough and continue to beat until smooth. Add the candied citrus rinds and raisins and beat to distribute evenly, about 1 minute. Stir in 1 cup of the flour. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead the dough, gradually adding more flour as necessary to achieve a soft, very smooth elastic dough. This should take 5 to 7 minutes. Shape the dough into a ball. Rub a large bowl with olive oil and place the dough in the bowl. Turn the ball so that the surface is coated with oil. Top the bowl with an airtight cover and let the dough rise at room temperature until tripled, 3 to 5 hours. Grease the bread mold (see recipe introduction) with butter and dust with flour. Cut out a round of parchment paper to fit the mold bottom precisely and slip it into place.

Punch down the dough by loosely folding the edges into the center and turning it over so the top is once again smooth. Do not press all of the air out as you shape it into a loose ball. Place the ball in the prepared mold. Using a sharp serrated knife, cut a ½ inch deep X in the top of the loaf, extending it to the edges. Cover the mold with a damp towel (the towel must be damp because the dough is very sticky) and let the load rise at room temperature until doubled, 2 ½ to 4 hours. Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F. Cut a second X in the top of the load, retracing the lines of the first X. Bake the loaf in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F and bake until a cake tester or a thin bamboo skewer inserted in the center comes out dry, about 40 minutes longer. Remove to a wire rack to cool in the mold for 30 minutes. Then gently glide the load out of the mold and cool it on its side , giving a quarter turn every 10 to 15 minutes, until cooled completely. To store, wrap tightly and keep at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Recipe By : David Dropkin


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