If you walk down any street in Rome during the holidays, you will notice every other person carrying a large box of cake. That would be panettone or pandoro, they are traditional Italian Christmas cake.
They are everywhere, so of course we had to try some.
The taste reminds me of packaged Hawaiian sweet bread that you buy in bulk at Costco. But the first time you ever buy a pandoro it is a bit unclear how you are even supposed to cut it.
Let me tell you, this is not how to eat panettone:
(But it is 100% how I ate panettone the first time I ever bought one).
The Italian Christmas cake is both dense and light, so it can be difficult to cut. However, the correct way to eat panettone is to cut thin, tall slices.
You want to be sure to remove the paper wrapper that runs around the outside of the base of the cake before you try to cut the panettone. Trust me, it makes it easier to slice it the cardboard wrapper is peeled back.
And you certainly do not want to serve the slice of cake with the wrapper still attached.
Using the right kind of knife (a long, serrated knife like a simple bread knife) is key. This is the best way to cut through the light texture without destroying or smushing the cake.
How to eat panettone
Once you have sliced the panettone, it is very easy to eat. The most traditional way to serve the panettone is on its own, after dinner. The cake is not usually eaten with any kind of extras like ice cream or frosting. The simple cake is enjoyed as is.
As the Christmas season continues and the cakes begin to pile up in everyone’s homes, the panettone is sometimes eaten for breakfast, as well. To be incredibly indulgent, you can use a slice of panettone to make a super sweet version of French toast.
Here is more about how to serve panettone. If you enjoy Christmastime in Italy, you might also want to see the most beautiful places in Rome during the holidays.
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