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Dec 3, 2013


Pandoro: Karen's Kitchen Stories

I have wanted to make Pandoro bread ever since I saw this post on Wild Yeast. I had been having great success with a panettone recipe, and that Pandoro sounded like a great challenge.

Pandoro (or pan d'oro/golden bread) is buttery sweet bread that is served at Christmas in Verona, northern Italy. It is a cousin of panettone, but without the fruit. It is a slightly sweet dough, resembling brioche, and is delicious served with sweetened mascarpone with rum and toasted almonds. I loved it with whipped cream and raspberry jam.

So many recipes, so little time! Especially when the recipe is a three day affair. While I still must try Susan's recipe, the formula I used here takes just one day to make.

The original recipe calls for active dry yeast. Instead, I used SAF Gold, an osmotolerant yeast. Osmotolerant you say? It is designed to work well with sweet, enriched doughs. In this case, the rising times shortened quite a bit. Depending on the yeast that you use, the rising times will vary. Don't worry, as long as you keep an eye on your dough, you will be fine.

I found my pandoro pan from the San Francisco Baking Institute. For the other half of the dough, I used two 5 1/2 inch panettone papers and shortened the baking time to 40 minutes.

The loaf baked in the pandoro pan is large, and the first question I always get is, "how do you cut it?"

I'm not exactly sure of the proper way, but I like to cut it in half horizontally and then cut vertical slices like a cake.

Pandoro: Karen's Kitchen Stories

Pandoro Bread

Makes two large loaves. Adapted from The Italian Baker.



4 1/4 tsp instant yeast
120 g warm water
1 large egg
2 T sugar
100 g unbleached all purpose flour

First Dough

380 g (scant 3 cups) pastry flour
435 g (3 cups plus 4 teaspoons) unbleached all purpose flour
1 tsp instant yeast
1/4 C sugar
All of the sponge
2 large eggs
55 g unsalted butter, room temperature

Second Dough

All of the first dough
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 C sugar
The rest of the reserved flour from the first dough
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp fiori de Sicilia or lemon oil, or 1 tsp lemon extract
10 ounces (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
105 grams all purpose flour as needed, for kneading the dough


Make the Sponge

  1. Whisk the ingredients together in the bowl of a stand mixer. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled. This should take about 30 minutes.

Make the First Dough

  1. Whisk the two flours together in a bowl.
  2. Measure 2 1/2 cups of this flour mixture and set aside the rest for the second dough.
  3. Add the 2 1/2 cups of flour, the yeast, sugar, and eggs into the sponge and stir. Add the butter and beat with the paddle attachment until mixed. 
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes.

Make the Second Dough

  1. Add the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and extracts to the first dough and beat with the paddle attachment. 
  2. Add the butter by tablespoon into the dough.
  3. Mix in the rest of the flour and the salt. 
  4. Switch to the dough hook and mix for about 6 minutes. Add about 70 grams of all purpose flour by tablespoon while kneading. 
  5. The dough will be light, buttery, and sticky. 
  6. Scrape the dough into an oiled bowl or dough rising bucket and let it rise until doubled, about 1 to 3 hours. 
  7. Sprinkle about 3 T of flour onto the top of the risen dough and drop it onto the counter. Flour the top of the dough as well as your hands. 
  8. Cut the dough in half with a bench knife or dough scraper. 
  9. Form each half into a ball and place each into an oiled pandoro pan. Alternatively, you can use 2 pound coffee cans that have been lined with parchment. 
  10. Let rise until the dough rises to the top of the pans, about 90 to 240 minutes, depending on the room temperature and the dough activity. 
  11. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and bake for 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees F and bake for about 20 to 30 minutes more. 
  12. Let the bread cool in the mold before removing. 
  13. Place the loaf on a plate and shower with powdered sugar.

Let's see what our #twelveloaves bakers baked this month:

Would you like to comment?

  1. You made my favorite pandoro recipe Karen! I think this bread alone is worth the book. It's so amazing! I've made it so many times, and it's by far my favorite instead of panettone, which is the traditional bread served here. Thanks for baking with us!

    1. After I made this, I saw your post from last January! Loved your snow covered pandoro!

  2. fabulous, Karen! I have got to get that pan. It's so beautiful and so festive and SO ITALIAN!:))) thank you for sharing this gorgeous bread with us this month for #TwelveLoaves

    1. Thanks so much Lora. I thought of you when I made it. =)

  3. Your bread is stunning! Definitely worth the effort and making it for the holidays sounds like a wonderful idea.

  4. Wow! This looks so pretty and delish that made me speechless…

  5. This looks just lovely! I would love a bit toasted with butter and jam for breakfast. I bet it makes stellar french toast too!

    1. That is exactly how I've been having it. Can't wait to try French toast.

  6. I've never heard of this but it looks fantastic!

    1. Me neither until recently and I just had to try it.

  7. your pandoro is absolutely beautiful!!! I want to bake every single bread from this month's Twelve Loaves. . yours probably first!! beautiful and delicious!!

    1. Thanks Alice =) I'm with you on that. They are all gorgeous.

  8. Your bread is gorgeous! I just love all the beautiful holiday breads that show up this time of year.

  9. Gorgeous!! I must get a pandoro pan. What a fabulous bread for any holiday table.

    1. Thanks Renee. Sometimes we just have to have a single use pan don't we?

  10. What a wonderful bread! I have never made a panettone as the family would not be happy with the fruit in the bread. So I'm thrilled that you shared a's just gorgeous! I now need a pan as well :)

    1. Thank you Liz. There is always justification for another pan, right? =)

  11. This looks spectacular! What a lovely presentation!!! Guess I need to buy myself a new pan. LOL
    Renee - Kudos Kitchen

  12. This Pandoro is beautiful and if it is anything like a brioche, I know I'd love it! I'm pinning this for later on. I'll need to try this. Thank you for sharing your notes on the recipe. Since you mentioned pannetone, I am just now realizing that I've never made that either. I need to get to work! :-)

    1. Thanks so much Dionne! Both panettone and pandoro have been challenges I've wanted to try forever.

  13. Karen I love your Blog and your Pandoro.
    I'm from Verona and Pandoro is the typical Christmas cake in my town.

  14. Wow! Your pandoro is absolutely perfect!

  15. What an amazing looking bread - loved learning more about it's background!


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