I love making breads. It's something about the magic of combining just a few simple ingredients such as flour, yeast, suger and water and making something tasty, chewey, light, crusty, soft, airy, etc, etc, etc. The magic of rising dough amazes me every single time. How it rises in a few hours, how it becomes alive, how it feels under my hands. This recipe is really good. The resulting panetonne has a very nice crumb and texture. It's flavourful and full of tasty fruity goodness.
recipe adapted from The Essential Christmas Cookbook
- Sultanas and/or other type of raisins - 1/2 cup
- Dried apricots, chopped in raisin size pieces - 1/2 cup
- Brandy or rum - 1 tablespoon
- Dried yeast - 7 g
- Warm milk - 220 ml
- Sugar - 1/4 cup
- White bread flour - 3 1/4 cup
- Eggs - 2
- Vanilla extract - 1 teaspoon
- Butter, room temperature - 150 g
- Butter, melted, to glaze - 20 g
- Put the raisins and dried apricots in a small bowl, add the alcohol, mix well and set aside.
- Put the yeast, warm milk and 1 teaspoon of sugar in a small bowl and leave in a warm place for 10-15 minutes, or until foamy.
- Sift 200 g flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt into a large bowl, make a well in the centre and add the yeast mixture.
- Mix together with a large metal spoon to form a soft dough.
- Cover the bowl and leave to "sponge" and rise in a warm place for 45 minutes, or until froth and risen.
- Add the eggs, remaining sugar and vanilla and mix.
- Add te butter and stir until well combined.
- Stir in the remaining flour and mix well.
- Knead well on a floured surface until the dough is smooth and elastic. You may need to add up to 1/2 cup flour to the dough as you knead.
- Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for 1.5-2 hours, or until doubled.
- Lightly grease a 15 cm round cake tin and line the base and side
with a double thickness of baking paper, ensuring the collar extends
above the rim of the tin by 10 cm.
- Knock back the dough and turn out onto a floured work surface.
- Roll into a 30x20 cm rectangle.
- Drain the fruit mixture and spread half the fruit over the surface of the dough.
- Fold over the short edges like an envelope to cover the fruit.
- Roll again and repeat the process to incorporate all the fruit.
- Gently knead the dough for 203 minutes and shape into a neat ball.
- Place in the tin, brush with the melted batter, then slash a cross on the top with a sharp knife and leave to rise again in a warm place for 45 minutes, or until doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven to 190C (375F).
- Bake for 50 minutes, or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Leave in the tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool.
- It's a lovely dough, light and fluffy and very easy to work with. I
usually make dough in my KitchenAid mixer and this was no exception.
- I'd add a little more sugar and a little less butter.
- That amount of dough resulted in one large and one small panettone.