In Italy, the Christmas season doesn’t start with store shelves filled with decorations and presents—it starts with shelves of Panettone. These tall, sweet breads welcome the holidays and the many huge meals that go with them. You never go to someone’s house without a big box of panettone in hand. The problem is, if you’re not a born and “bread” carb junkie like most Italians, by the end of the holiday season, you will have quite the collection of panettone. So what is one to do with all these huge, packaged breads? February is almost over--I need to get cookin'!
One of my favorite things to do with traditional panettone (even more than eating it plain) is to make French toast out of it. The thick, buttery slices filled with raisins and candied oranges goes so well served fluffy and hot with a bit of syrup and orange marmalade. And it’s even super easy.
Panettone Italian Toast
1 loaf panettone (with canditi)
1 c. whole milk
½ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract (another thing I can’t find here)
1 tsp. grated orange rind
1 Tbsp. orange liquor (Grand Marnier or Cointreau)
pinch of salt
Slice your panettone into thick slices.
Mix all your ingredients into a large bowl. When all your ingredients are mixed, dip one slice of panettone into the egg mixture at a time and cook in a med-high fry pan with a touch of butter.
Cover your pan with a lid so it cooks through the middle and gets fluffy.
I recommend keeping your cooked pieces in a warm oven until you finish.
Serve hot with pure maple syrup and orange marmalade. It will be the best Italian toast you've ever had!
Stay tuned for my next installment...did you see how many I have to go through?