Not yet rated

This classic panettone recipe from Andrea Tortora requires some careful timing and a bunch of patience, but the result is well worth it. Panettone is a true symbol of Italian Christmas, complex, subtle, aromatic and simply delicious. If you find this recipe intimidating, you could always buy his spectacular panettone from selected shops in the UK, listed on his website.

First published in 2016

For this recipe you will need some specialist kit, including:

– Temperature probe for measuring the dough.

– A standing mixer.

– Panettone cases, available from specialist online retailers.

– Knitting needles or thin wooden dowelling for suspending the panettones upside down after baking.




First refresh

  • 20g of strong white flour
  • 20g of natural yeast
  • 9g of water

Second refresh

  • 40g of strong white flour
  • 40g of natural yeast
  • 17g of water

Third refresh

  • 80g of strong white flour
  • 80g of natural yeast
  • 34g of water

First panettone dough

  • 400g of strong white flour
  • 170g of butter, soft
  • 190g of natural yeast, from the third refresh
  • 200g of egg yolk
  • 150g of water, at 28C
  • 175g of caster sugar

Second panettone dough

  • 100g of strong white flour
  • 35g of caster sugar
  • 60g of egg yolks
  • 60g of butter, soft
  • 16g of honey
  • 12g of salt
  • 1/2 vanilla pod, Tahitian, seeds scraped
  • 1/2 orange, freshly zested
  • 1/2 lemon, freshly zested
  • 200g of candied orange zest, 1cmx1cm
  • 200g of raisins


  • 40g of white almond flour
  • 40g of hazelnut flour
  • 120g of caster sugar
  • 9g of soft flour
  • 2g of cocoa powder
  • 3g of cornflour
  • 50g of egg white
  • almonds, to garnish
  • pearl sugar, to garnish


To begin, start making a mother dough - it’s best to do this at 6am the day before serving. Mix all of the ingredients for ‘natural yeast, first refresh’ in a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook and stir for 7 minutes, making sure the temperature of the dough does not exceed 27°C. Allow to rise for 3 hours at 27°C until tripled in volume
At approximately 10am, mix all of the ingredients for the ‘second refresh’ in the stand mixer with the first set of dough, stirring for 7 minutes. The final dough should reach a max temperature of 27°C. Leave to rise for 3 hours at 27°C until tripled in volume
At approximately 2pm, repeat the process with the mixture of ingredients for the third refresh, stirring for 7 minutes with the final dough reaching 27°C. Leave to rise for 3 hours at 27°C until tripled in volume. The resulting dough is the 'mother dough' for your panettone
That night (at around 6pm) make the first panettone dough. Melt the caster sugar in the water over a low heat, then add the flour and half of the egg yolks
Combine in a stand mixer and mix thoroughly to obtain a smooth and elastic dough. Add the mother dough from the third refresh and the remaining egg yolks, mixing until combined. Finish by adding the soft butter a little at a time. The final dough should be at a temperature of 26°C
Leave to rest and triple in volume for 12 hours at 27°C
At 7am the next day, make the second panettone dough by mixing the first dough with the flour in a stand mixer. Knead for about 15 minutes. If the dough is very thin, you may need to add a little more flour
Add the sugar and egg yolks in 3 additions, allowing to combine before the next addition each time
Add the honey, vanilla seeds, orange and lemon zests. Once combined, add the salt and mix for another 3 minutes
Gradually add the soft butter a knob at a time and mix until smooth, shiny and elastic. Mix together the candied oranges and raisins and add to the dough. Allow to rest for one hour at 27°C
At approximately 8.30am, divide the dough in half – each piece should weigh about 1050g. Roll each piece twice and place in the panettone moulds. Leave to rise for another 6 hours at 27°C
At around 3.30pm, preheat the oven to 170°C/gas mark 3.5
To make the icing, blend all of the ingredients with a hand blender and use to glaze the panettone. Sprinkle with almonds and pearl sugar
Bake until the inner part of the panettone reaches 94°C, then remove from the oven and leave to hang upside down by inserting a knitting needle or long piece of dowling through the bottom of the panettone and suspending it. Leave for 12 hours before serving
First published in 2016

Andrea Tortora was recently awarded best Pastry in Italy from the Gambero Rosso Guide for 2017. Andrea is now head pastry chef of Chef Norbert Niederkofler’s 2 Michelin Star Restaurant St. Hubertus.

Get in touch

Please sign in or register to send a comment to Great British Chefs.

You may also like

Load more