panettone and ricotta dome

This wonderful and easy Italian cake is one of my all time favourites. It took me a long time to track down the exact recipe, and this is it. Enjoy!


1 kg panettone
175 ml Vin Santo

875g ricotta
140g caster sugar
40g flaked almonds
50g dark chocolate
1 tbsp cocoa powder
70g glacee fruit, various (pears, kiwi, apricot, cherries, melon, lemon and orange peel etc)

Preparation method

Split ricotta and sugar into two halves, and mix the two ingredients with a fork in two separate bowls, until light and creamy. To one of the bowls also add cocoa powder, and mix well.

Finely chop the chocolate and glacee fruit, and halve it, together with the almonds. Add equal quantities of these ingredients to two bowls with ricotta.

Line a large, fairly steep bowl (diameter at the top 20cm, height 11cm) with cling film. Leave loads of film to hang over the sides. The idea is that once assembled, the cake can be completely wrapped in cling film.

Remove the hard crust on the panettone if present, and then cut two round discs, approximately 2.5cm thick. Slice the rest of the cake lengthwise, into 2.5 cm thick slices.

Layer the walls of the bowl with panettone slices, making sure they overlap. Then using a pastry brush, moisten the cake really well with 3/4 of the Vin Santo amount.

Pour the non-cocoa ricotta filling into the bottom of the cake and cover with the smaller of two round discs of panettone. Brush the sponge with Vin Santo.
Then repeat by pouring the cocoa ricotta mix and cover with the larger disc of panettone.

Now your bowl should be full to the brim. Gently ensure a snug fit, and use the rest of the Vin Santo to moisturise all visible panettone, including the edges.

When you are done, fold over the cling film that's hanging off the edges, and enclose the entire cake. Cover with another layer of cling film. Place a plate on top, and weigh it down with two 400g cans.

Leave in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight.

When you are ready to serve it, flip the cake over onto a different plate. You should end up with a perfectly formed domed cake.

Dust with some more cocoa, slice and serve.

Bon appetit!

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