PANETTONE BREAD AND BUTTER PUDDING
As far as I know this has never been an Italian dish; instead it seems to have been invented simultaneously by various cooks around the world. You will need an ovenproof dish with 5cm high edges. Porcelain or enamelled cast-iron is best.
Cut the panettone in half and then slice into 1 cm slabs. Butter these and butter the ovenproof dish. Mix the cream, sugar, milk and eggs thoroughly to a custard. Scatter the base of the dish with a few raisins then arrange the slabs of buttered panettone on top, overlapping like roof tiles. If you have not got enough slices from a 1 /2 panettone to fill the dish, cut and butter some more. (Hence the rather vague quantity given below.) When the dish is covered by the layers of overlapping slices, stop and insert more raisins. Pour over all the custard mix, and poke about a bit until you are sure the liquid has penetrated under the slices.
Leave to soak for 1 hour. The panettone will by this time have absorbed some of the liquid.
Preheat the oven to 150’C/300’F/Gas 2. Find a larger dish into which the prepared pudding will fit, and put it in. Place in the oven and then half fill the outer dish or bain-marie with water. Bake for 35 minutes or so until firm but pliant to the touch. The top should be brown and slightly crusty.
This is best served at room temperature, 1-2 hours out of the oven. I have been known to scatter the top with icing sugar and brown further under the grill.
Ingredients (6-8 people)
½ – ⅓ or 1 Panettone (see above)
100g unsalted butter
500ml double cream
170g caster sugar
2 tbsp raisins soaked in grappa (ideally, several days before)
In response to the unavailability of this speciality in summer, or driven by a sudden urge to undertake my Panettone Bread and Butter Pudding recipe (below) here is a way to create your own…
Dissolve the yeast in the 2 tbsp warm water with the 1/2 tsp sugar. Put the egg yolks, the remaining water and the yeast mixture into the bowl of a mixer and combine. Add the remaining sugar, the butter, salt and half of the flour, and work to a paste. Add the rest of the flour and work until it forms a ball. Turn the dough out of the machine and work by hand, adding more flour if necessary, until the texture is smooth and elastic.
Put the dough into a floured bowl, cover, and leave to rise for several hours until doubled in volume. Line a it 30 cm spring-clip cake tin with a column of baking paper to increase its height by 3-4 cm.
Punch down the dough and incorporate the citrus zest and the sultanas (squeezed to remove most of the grappa). Press the dough into the cake tin and leave to rise a second time until it has doubled again in volume. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 160°C/325°F/Gas 3.
Brush the top of the loaf with beaten egg yolk and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour. The bread is done when it makes a hollow sound when tapped, and when a knife inserted into the centre of the loaf comes out clean.
Use as below, but even better, slice, toast and butter for breakfast.
Ingredients (makes 1 loaf)
12.5g fresh yeast (6g dried)
80ml water plus 2 tbsp
100g caster suga plus ½ tsp
12 egg yolks
150g butter, melted
½ tsp salt
500g plain flour
grated zest of 2 lemons and 2 oranges
100g sultanas, soakeds overnight in a little grappa