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Dessert Recipes

Pandolce Genovese-#TwelveLoaves


Pandolce Genovese-#TwelveLoaves

Christmas time is my favorite time of the year! It's not about the presents for me, it's about the baking! Not only do we bake all different kinds of cookies, we also bake special breads, like this Pandolce Genovese.



I've been lucky enough to be in Italy during Christmas time. The cities sparkle with beautiful lights and you can visit all the different markets selling special artisan products and special foods. It is guaranteed that no matter where you will go, expect to have some panettone or pandoro.

Pandolce Genovese-#TwelveLoaves

Panettone derives from the Italian word “panetto”, a small loaf bread. I love panettone and pandoro and we will bake a panettone this Christmas.

Pandolce Genovese-#TwelveLoaves

In the stunning Ligurian region of Italy, they make pandolce. This is a recipe I found in an older Saveur book I have that is all about Italian food. I had mentioned when I first posted this that I also found a Nick Malgieri recipe for the pandolce. I never ended up making it and I have no idea where I found it, but I remember the recipes being very similar.

Pandolce Genovese-#TwelveLoaves


some notes on this recipe:

This slightly sweet fruit-and-nut-studded bread is a dense bread and in my opinion, much better than a fruitcake. I made two loaves instead of one very big one.  It is not as buttery and it is also not as wonderfully fluffy as panettone or pandoro. When you use yeast for this recipe it is called pandolce alto. If you use baking powder instead of yeast, it is called pandolce basso. I find this bread to remind me of an Irish soda bread in consistency (even though it's made with yeast). The scent that fills your house while it is baking is lovely and festive.  In this version I added currants and dried cranberries. I didn't have pinoli on hand and chopped up some almonds instead. You could add dried plums or dried apricots. I have also seen a version with chocolate and hazelnuts. That is what I will try next!! I actually will make my own lievito madre (natural leaven)to make this next bread. My mother-in-law always makes her Calabrian bread with her own lievito madre.

You may think something was wrong with your yeast as I did when the timer beeps to remind you that it's ready to bake. The dough will not have risen very much. It is a dense bread and it will rise more in the oven while it's baking.





#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party created by Lora from Savoring Italy and runs smoothly with the help of Heather of All Roads Lead to the Kitchen, and the rest of our fabulous bakers.

This month we are baking Holiday Breads that are perfect to celebrate the holiday season. For more bread recipes, visit the #TwelveLoaves Pinterest board, or check out last month's inspiring selection of #TwelveLoaves Thanksgiving Biscuits and Rolls!




Pandolce Genovese
by Savoring Italy
Prep Time: 3-4 hours
Cook Time: 45 minutes to one hour

Ingredients (2 round loaves or 1 large roun)
    dough ingredients
    • 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
    • 1/2 cup warm milk
    • 1/2 cup butter, softened, plus additional for greasing
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 1 tbsp. fennel seeds
    • 1 egg, lightly beaten
    • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
    • 4 tsp. orange flower water
    • 3 1/2 cups flour
    filling ingredients
    • 1?2 cup dried currants
    • 1/3 cup golden raisins
    • 1/3 cup finely chopped candied (I used grated zest from one orange )
    • orange rind
    • 1/3 cup pine nuts (I used chopped whole almonds in this one)
    Instructions
    Prepare the filling ingredients and set aside in a small bowl.

    Dissolve yeast in milk in a small bowl. Set aside until foamy, about 10 minutes.

    Meanwhile, beat butter in an electric mixer and gradually add sugar, beating until mixture is light and fluffy. Mix in the egg, vanilla, and orange flower water, and mix thoroughly.

    Add milk and dissolved yeast and mix. (Mixture may appear slightly curdled.)

    Switch to the dough hook and gradually add flour, mixing thoroughly.

    When dough is smooth, mix in currants, raisins, orange rind, and pine nuts. The dough will be moist. Transfer dough to a large greased bowl. Cover with a clean dish towel and set aside in a warm place to rise for 3–4 hours. (Dough may only rise a little; this is a dense bread.)

    Preheat oven to 375°. Your dough may be sticky. If so, wet your hands before transferring the dough to your parchment lined cookie sheet. Shape into a 6 inch round and make a tic-tac-toe (#) pattern on top of the bread with a sharp knife.

    Bake until golden, 45 minutes to 1 hour. *I checked my bread after about 40 minutes and lowered the heat to 350 and tented it with aluminum foil so it wouldn’t brown too much more during the remainder of the baking time.

    Cool completely. To serve, cut or break into small pieces and serve with sweet wine, if desired. (Store in an airtight container.)

    15 comments

    1. Now I think this bread looks delicious. I love that your mother-in-law shares in your bread baking, and I can't wait to see your breads from your own lievito madre.

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    4. This looks amazing! I love baking this time of year too, and I can't wait to try out this bread!

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    5. Totally new type of bread to me and it looks wonderful. Definitely better than fruitcake lol!

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    6. Lora, that bread looks beautiful! I love the crust! How cool that you are maintaining a lievitro madre!

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    7. The holidays are all about the baking for me too, and a house that smells like fresh baked bread is a beautiful thing. Can't wait to try out this recipe and enjoy it warm with a slice of butter.

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    8. This reminds me of childhood with my Italian grandmother and her side of the family. LOVE.

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    9. Your bread looks absolutely delicious. I love the flavors in panettone and I'm sure I would love this too. I'll definitely have to try it soon.

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    10. I love how rustic and tasty this bread looks!

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    11. This bread looks really delicious! I love bread during this time of year, too! I can't wait to try this!

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    12. I love the texture of this bread. It looks like it would make a perfect bread to dunk into a hot cup of coffee of tea, and that crust is to die for!

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    13. This sounds amazing! Italy during Christmas time sounds just heavenly too!

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    14. Oh wow! Christmas in Italy sounds amazing and so does this bread!!

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    15. This looks like my kind of bread Lora, I love spiced fruity breads especially ones such as this. It looks lovely.

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