Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Chocolate Cherry Panettone with Almonds

Chocolate Cherry Panettone with Almonds is such a festive way to kick off the holiday season! A dash of vanilla and orange flower water and a hint of saffron make this extra special, while a few scoops of @nakednutrition Pumpkin Spice #nakedshake adds protein and more flavour!

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My favourite thing about the holidays is the smells associated with the spices and sweet baking that takes place. On the 23rd of December each year, my mom wakes up extra early (about 5AM) to start making our traditional holiday brioche and Challah, so by the time I'm awake to braid the Challah the house is already filled with the scents of cinnamon, dried fruit, yeast and sugar. My contributions are often less labour intensive - say, gingerbread and biscotti - but the timing worked just right this year for me to get in a holiday loaf of my own!

Last year I made these rich, golden panettone loaves as gifts, and it was in this vein that I decided to give it another twist. This time, I added dried cherries, almonds, and a hit of spices and protein with Naked Nutrition's Naked Shake in Pumpkin Spice flavour. Along with the whole wheat flour, I added some extra fibre with Naked Fiber, and tossed in some chopped dark chocolate for good measure (everything is better with chocolate!). 

I chose to bake this batch in two standard loaf pans, but you can also bake them in Texas-style muffin pans using the instructions here. If you don't have saffron, the same amount of turmeric will give the same colour (though not flavour), and for the orange flower water you can sub in some orange juice (again, different flavour but still delicious).

I wish each and every reader a safe and happy end to 2021 and a lucky 2022! I will be back in January with more delicious treats (and ramblings as I keep navigating my grad program).

Chocolate Cherry Panettone with Almonds

Makes 2 loaves
1 1/3 cups warm water
1 tbsp vanilla
2 tsp orange flower water
1 tbsp honey
zest of 2 oranges
1 tbsp vanilla
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp lecithin granules (optional, this helps soften the texture of the whole grains)
1 tsp saffron
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp allspice
1 tbsp instant yeast (I used SAF Gold)
2 scoops Naked Shake Pumpkin Spice
2 scoops Naked Fiber
2 eggs
2 tbsp butter, softened
1 tsp salt
4 oz chopped dark chocolate
3/4 cup chopped dried cherries
3/4 cup slivered almonds
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the water, vanilla, orange flower water, honey, orange zest, vanilla, sugar, lecithin, saffron, ginger and allspice, whisking well.
  2. Add the flour, yeast, Naked Shake and Naked Fiber and mix for 3 minutes, to just combine. 
  3. Cover and let rest 10 minutes.
  4. With the mixer running, add the eggs, one at a time, then butter and salt.
  5. Knead for 8 minutes, until smooth and elastic.
  6. Cover and let rise for one and a half hours, until doubled.
  7. Knock down and knead in the chocolate, cherries and almonds. 
  8. Divide dough in two and place in greased loaf pans.
  9. Cover and let rise 45 minutes.
  10. Heat the oven to 350F.
  11. Bake the loaves for 40 minutes. Turn out of the pans immediately and cool on a wire rack.

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