Panettone, the traditional Italian Holidays Dessert
During the Christmas season,Panettone, the traditional Italian Dessert is available everywhere from the classic version to elaborate flavors.
Panettone, when eaten with a sip of sparkling spumante or Prosecco, guarantees good luck and good health for the coming year.
I was introduced to this tradition over 15 years ago while living in Milan. The custom of eating Panettone, especially during the year-end holiday season, spread from Milan throughout Italy, and found in every coffee bar and almost every restaurant in Milan.
It is made tall, dome-shaped or flat and round. The interior is filled with candied fruit, raisins, or with chocolate or flavored cream, chocolate chips or pastry cream and even liqueurs; and the exterior either can be plain, or as in the Pandoro, covered with confectioners’ sugar.
There are numerous myths and mysteries surrounding its origins. It comes with a rich and varied history –one states that its birthplace is Milan. It appeared in Northern Italy around the 15th century. One legend says a Milanese nobleman Ughetto degli Atellani fell in love with the daughter of a poor baker named Antonio. To win her over, the nobleman disguised himself as a baker and invented a rich bread in which he added to the flour and yeast, butter, eggs, dried raisins and candied lemon and orange peel. After having the bread, the duke of Milan, Ludovico il Moro Sforza (1452 – 1508), agreed to the marriage, and encouraged the introduction of the new cake-like bread.
Other historians, as far back as the 1300s, claim to have found references to “pan dei ton” which means ‘luxury bread’, in Milanese dialect.
How to Serve Panettone
Italians eat Panettone at breakfast with coffee, and between meals. It remains fresh for several days, and makes a delicious host gift.
When serving Panettone, simply remove the paper liner and slice the loaf with a serrated knife. Another preference is to place the loaf on its side after removing the paper and cut ½-inch rounds. It is even delicious served several days old. Leftover Panettone makes delicious toast, which fit into a toaster.
It can be served alone or eaten with zabaglione or with creamy mascarpone cheese, jams, or butters, and accompanied with a flute of sparkling wine like spumante, Prosecco, Moscato d’Asti or Vin Santo. Tradition is to eat a slice of Panettone on January 4th, to commemorate the feast of San Biagio, the patron saint of the throat – to insure good health for the coming year.
BAULI – Verona, Italy
Since 1922 – where Ruggero Bauli started baking the traditional holiday cake – Pandoro di Verona, then shortly after Ruggero and family added Panettone.
DAL COLLE – Colognola ai Colli (Verona) Italy
Founded in 1896 – Executive Chef Egidio Dal Colle, represents the third generation of the family using ancient tradition and natural ingredients in its products.
LA TORINESE – Turin, Italy
Established and located in downtown Turin in 1932 - One of few hand-made non-industrialized artisan style bakeries. They produce only a few thousand Panettoni a season.
Suggest Wine Parings:
Lombardy - Franciacorta DOCG
Veneto - Prosecco di Valdobbiadene DOC
Piedmont - Acqui or Brachetto d’Acqui DOCG
Piedmont - Asti DOCG
Tuscany - Moscadello di Montalcino DOC
By Maria Battaglia
|||Every year in Apulia 33 million pounds of fava beans are harvested and transformed into antipasti, side dishes, and soups.” The traditional country dish par excellence is a puree of fava beans (pure’ di fave e cicoria) served with sautéed wild chicory called ‘ncapriata.|
|||A beverage the world loves|
|||During the Christmas season,Panettone, the traditional Italian Dessert is available everywhere from the classic version to elaborate flavors.|