The Last Day: Bread of Gold
Oh, Bread of Gold, oh Bread of Gold, How lovely ’tis to eat you! This is a silly song the husband sings every time we talk about Pandoro, bread of Gold. It is his favorite bread of the season; probably because it contains no dried fruit or other flavoring, other than eggs, butter, vanilla, and a little sugar. You may be tempted to think it is rather plain, but nothing is further from the truth.
This bread is light, fluffy, and moist. Slightly sweet, it is rich with butter and eggs and almost melts in your mouth. Like a lot of the breads I have made this week, Pandoro requires advanced scheduling, but also a little flexibility as you will want to wait for the optimal moment to go on to each next step. Every step of the process is designed to make an impact on the finished flavor of the bread. After all, it has no fruit, spices, or nuts to distract you from the flavor of the bread.
It’s just pure golden bread, fit for a king.
This year, I went with the same recipe I used last year to be found in Artisan Baking. Yes, this is the third recipe I have made from this book in this series. Doesn’t it make you want to go and buy a copy? If you don’t want to, you can find a similar recipe here. I almost tried this new one, but I wanted to see if having a year-old starter and the right pans would make last year’s recipe taste different. The only change I made was to use vanilla bean seeds instead of extract.
This bread amazes me. It takes all three stand mixing bowls I have and four different attachments to make it. The amount of dough at the end seems tiny compared to the size of the pan.
16 hours later, the dough has filled the pan and is ready to go in the oven. Once in the oven, it expands even more! I sat in front of the oven watching the bread bake today because it just seemed amazing to me that it still had enough energy to keep growing.
Since this is the husband’s favorite, I am going to wait until he comes home from work to cut it open, so I will have to report back to you on how it compares to our memory of last year’s pandoro. It does look amazing, though, doesn’t it?
Today is the official beginning of winter and the shortest day of the year. From now on, the days will only get brighter and brighter. And can you believe this is the end of my Twelve Breads of Christmas series?! It’s a good thing I am done now, because there is just no more room in the freezer! It has been a fun, tasty, and highly interesting 12 days of looking at Christmas bread traditions around the world. Thank you for joining me! I hope you have enjoyed it as much as I have.
Now, you still have time to enter my give-away and have a chance at tasting a couple of these treats for yourself. You can leave comments on all twelve posts until midnight, my time, on Sunday, December 23. Only one comment per person per post will be entered into the drawing. I will announce the winner on Monday morning. Now that I am done baking breads, I am hoping to make some other treats to finish filling up the box.
Here’s a recap:
Day 1: panettone
Day 2: stollen
Day 3: panforte
Day 4: St. Lucia buns
Day 5: gingerbread cookies and cake
Day 6: kugelhof
Day 7: ebelskivers
Day 8: snowflake buns
Day 9: pulla
Day 10: gibassier
Day 11: christophomos
Day 12: pandoro