Panettone Holiday Trifle
‘Tis the season for Panettone and I couldn’t be happier or hungrier! This sweet Italian bread is a Christmas time tradition in Italy but luckily it has made it’s way around the world for us to enjoy too. It is available in many markets during the holidays and it is always a welcome site on the shelves for me. Knowing that I can easily go pick up a little piece of Italy and bring it home to enjoy always makes my heart happy. Panettone, or Italian Christmas happiness, as I like to call it, has a very distinct shape, texture, and lightly sweet flavor with it’s domed top, golden yellow airiness, and bits of raisins or candied fruit. It’s flavor is one of the most unique I have had and it just screams “I’m Italian” and “I’m special”…which is very true since the process to make Panettone takes up to 3 days to be prepare. Definitely not instant gratification for the baker, but hey, however long it takes to get it perfect right! Luckily for us consumers it comes ready and waiting in a beautiful box usually topped with a little ribbon handle perfect for carrying as you skip happily home to eat it. Like many other Italian dishes and desserts it has a long history and legends date it back to the 1500’s when it was created in the name of love to capture the heart and hand of a special someone….you know that one right? :) But it didn’t become the Panettone we all know and love today until the early 20th century though when a few bakers from Milan started to get a little creative and competitive….resulting in it’s perfection and it’s industrialization. Something we can all be thankful for. In fact, Italy produces over 115 million Panettone and Pandoro (it’s rivale cake) loaves every year for us all to enjoy. Not too shabby huh!
So if you can’t go to Italy this Christmas just head to the store and then skip home with your little bowed box of Italian Happiness. It can be enjoyed with a glass of prosecco, coffee or hot chocolate….or it can be enjoyed in the recipe below!
Panettone Holiday Trifle
Approximately 7 - 8 oz of Panettone which is approx. 2 minis or part of a larger cake
4 oz Mascarpone cheese
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup heavy cream
4 oz fresh raspberries
Grand Marnier or other liqueur*
1. Cut the Panettone into cubes and set aside.
2. Mix the mascarpone and sugar together and let sit 5-10 min until sugar is dissolved.
3. Mix heavy cream in a stand mixer or handheld mixer until stiff peaks form but it is still silky.
4. In trifle cups layer the Panettone and then drizzle as desired with liqueur. Add a few raspberries and then a layer of the mascarpone whipped cream. Repeat these steps 1 more time.
5. Top finished trifle with a few raspberries and a piece of the Panettone. Let sit for at least 15 min before serving.
* Other liqueurs such as Amaretto, Frangelico, Limoncello or Kahlua could be used. If you would like to leave the liqueur out altogether, coffee or orange juice could be substituted.
* Additional goodies that could be added -
Nuts such as sliced almonds or toasted hazelnuts.
Other berries like strawberries, blueberries or cherries.
Thinly shaved chocolate could be added into the layers or on top for decoration.