When you crave for something sweet but don’t know what exactly. Well, now that Christmas time is approaching very fast (too fast, let’s be honest!) we have several options. But if you live in Milan, one and only one could be the right choice: his majesty, Panettone. The Christmas sweet that every house has. From classic with sultanas and dried orange zest to the fanciest ones with marron glacee, berries, beer – yes beer, believe me!
Panettone, the legend says dates back tot he Roman times when people used to drizzle a type of cake with honey and nuts. Panettone as we know it today originates in Milan area, and around the 20th century two enterpreneurs/bakers started their production. The names are still reminded today, as they became two major bakery brands: Alemagna and Motta. Efforts to obtain the Protected Designation of Origin are still ongoing, wha we know for sure is that you cannot come home on Christmas day without a Panetton as a gift.
Since I am living in Milan from 2013 Panettone began to be my Christmas gift for our Christmas day table. On Christmas eve we sit all together having good food waiting for the 25th until midnight in order to open our gifts and we eat in the meanwhile a slice – or more let’s be honest – of Panettone. I have tried so many different variations: berries, pistachio, apricot and almonds, chocolate chip and red wine…but the classic one remains the best option. On Christmas day, paired with a nice cup of french press brewed coffee believe me it will be the best way to start your morning.
If you find yourself in Milan follow my advice, take some time and visit one of the best patisseries in town: Giovanni Cova. Cova is famous worldwide for the panettone production since 1930. The boutique is in the heart of Milan, just 2 minutes walk from Castello Sforzesco in Brera district. Here you will find all types of panettone, this morning I’ve been there ready for breakfast. I must admit a slice of panettone at 7.40 was way too much so I’ve opted for a nice and crunchy vegan croissant with gianduja cream and marron glacèè finishing. Amazing, not too sweet, light and crunchy with the right amount of filling. As I was still a little bit hungry I also had a mini round croissant, but for me the vegan option was way more easier to appreciate without butter. Regarding Panettone on Friday I will go and buy for sure the new flavour made with turmeric and ginger, so I can give it as a gift to my family coming in Milan.
And you, what kind of Christmas MUST HAVE dessert are you?