Panettone Holiday Fruitcakemedium prep time 25 mins + 5 hrs for the resting | cook time 1 hr | SERVINGS 36
2 1/4 cups flour (divided)
2/3 cup water
2 tbsp apricot jam
1 tbsp instant yeast (divided)
1/4 cup La Fe Brown Sugar
1 1/2 cup softened butter (divided)
6 egg yolks
1 tsp salt
2 tsp good quality vanilla
3/4 tsp orange extract
3/4 tsp lemon extract
2 tbsp honey
1/2 cup dried cherries (chopped fine)
1/2 cup golden raisins (chopped fine)
1/2 cup pecans (chopped fine)
2 tbsp melted butter
1 cup confectioners sugar (sifted)
1/2 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt
2-4 tbsp La Fe Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 tbsp milk
Make the Sponge: Place 1 1/2 cups flour, 2/3 cup water, 2 tablespoons apricot jam, and 1 teaspoon yeast in a small bowl and whisk together. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rest for 3 hours.
Make the Dough: In the bowl of a standing mixer, add the sponge, 3/4 cup flour, 1/4 cup La Fe brown sugar, and 1 teaspoon yeast. Use the hook attachment to knead the dough until the mixture is smooth and stretchy, about 3-5 minutes.
Add 3 egg yolks, one at a time, and knead until the dough is smooth, shiny, and stretchy.
Cover dough with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
Return dough to the mixer, and add salt, vanilla, lemon and orange flavoring, honey, and 1 teaspoon yeast. Knead for 1 minute.
Add 3 egg yolks and knead until incorporated. Add the 12 tablespoons of softened butter, one tablespoon at a time. Knead until the dough is soft, shiny and very stretchy, about 5 minutes. The dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl.
Toss the chopped raisins, cherries and pecans with 2 tablespoons of flour. Add them to the dough and knead briefly, until just mixed in.
Place dough in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
The next morning, turn the dough out onto a floured surface and shape into a ball. Place dough inside of a 6-inch diameter panettone mold, or use a clean, buttered coffee can lined with parchment paper. Make a small cross in the top of the dough with scissors.
Let dough rise in a warm place until tripled in size, which may take several hours since the dough is cold from the refrigerator.
Preheat the oven to 375 F for 30 minutes. Place the panettone in the oven, and lower the oven temperature to
325 F. Bake the panettone for about 1 hour, until it has risen high and springs back a little when pressed on top
(like a muffin).
Let panettone cool in the pan on a rack. Make icing (optional): Melt 2 tablespoons butter, and whisk into 1 cup powdered sugar. Add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, a pinch of salt, and 1 to 2 tablespoons of La Fe sweetened condensed milk as well as 2 tablespoons milk until desired consistency is reached. Drizzle icing decoratively over top of panettone. Store panettone wrapped in plastic for up to 1 week.