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ITALIAN PEPPERED BREAD

Panpepato, often called Italian Peppered Bread by non Italians, is a delicious traditional Christmas bread prepared with nuts, candied fruits and chocolate. A sweet, greedy, spicy loaf, enriched with a little black pepper, typical of central Italy (Umbria, Tuscany, and Emilia-Romagna)

This dessert has many variations depending on the region. The recipe passes from one generation to another and so you’ll find different variations even between families from the same place. Another famous Christmas bread, especially in Tuscany, is the Panforte which translates to “strong bread” and is said to be a derivative of the older Pan Pepato.

panpepato

Yields: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 20 mins Cook Time: 30 mins Total: 50 mins


What is Panpepato?

Preparing homemade Italian Peppered Bread is very simple. Unlike other Christmas Italian desserts like Pandoro and Panettone, the procedure doesn’t have any particular tricks and the result is distinctly flavorful, sweet and spicy cake.

In short, we mix the nuts with the candied fruit, honey, and dark chocolate and then add the flour, cocoa, and spices, including black pepper. Lastly, we add the raisins with some water and mix until we obtain a rounded dough and bake it.

I find this recipe to be the perfect gift to take to give to family or friends at Christmas time since it can be stored for up to 6 days. And if you’re planning to go somewhere in Tuscany around Christmas make sure to go to an artisan baker and pack your luggage back with Pan Pepato and panforte. I’m pretty sure they will love it! At least all my family does.

Italian Peppered Bread Ingredients

½ cup hazelnuts
½ cup almonds
½ cup walnuts
½ cup candied fruit
1 cup flour 00 (or Flour 00 Substitute)
½ cup cocoa
3.5 oz dark chocolate
7 tbsp honey
3 g cinnamon, ground
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp black pepper
½ tsp cloves, ground
⅓ cup raisins
¼ cup water

Peppered Bread Recipe (Panpepato)

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
  2. Soak the raisins in hot water and let them soak for 10 minutes.
  3. Place the nuts in a food processor: hazelnuts, walnuts, and almonds.
  4. Chop the nuts in the food processor very coarsely. Don’t chop it too small so that it remains clearly visible when the Italian Peppered Bread is cut.
  5. Mix the nuts together with the mixed candied fruit.
  6. Add honey and the melted dark chocolate to the dried candied fruit mixture mixing quickly.
  7. Mix the flour, cocoa, and spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, black pepper, and chopped cloves.
  8. Add some water and continue to mix
  9. Drain the raisins and mix until you obtain a compact mixture.
  10. Form a loaf and try to make it as regular as possible. Put the Italian peppered bread on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  11. Bake in a preheated static oven at 180 ° C or at 170 ° C in a convection oven for 25-30 minutes.
  12. Let our peppered cake cool and then serve it in slices

Variations

  • Terni: Precook the nuts and candied fruit so that all ingredients mix well.
  • Siena: Cover with powdered sugar,
  • Ferrara: Add a dark chocolate glaze.
  • Anagni: Has also a dark chocolate glaze but uses less chocolate and no icing.

In short, many variations, and all are appetizing! Try making Italian Peppered Bread yourself at home and then let us know if you liked it and how you did it!

FAQs

How can you keep the panpepato fresh?

The pepper bread can be stored for up to two weeks: put it in tin boxes to keep it always fresh.

panpepato

Panpepato - Italian Peppered Bread

Caroline Sciberras
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 26 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Italian
Servings 6 portions

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup hazelnuts
  • ½ cup almonds
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • ½ cup candied fruit
  • 1 cup flour 00 or Flour 00 Substitute
  • ½ cup cocoa
  • 3.5 oz dark chocolate
  • 7 tbsp honey
  • 3 g cinnamon ground
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp cloves ground
  • cup raisins
  • ¼ cup water

Instructions
 

PREPARATION

  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C.
  • Soak the raisins in hot water and let them soak for 10 minutes.
  • Place the nuts in a food processor: hazelnuts, walnuts, and almonds.
  • Chop the nuts in the food processor very coarsely. Don't chop it too small so that it remains clearly visible when the Italian Peppered Bread is cut.

MIXING DOUGH

  • Mix the nuts together with the mixed candied fruit.
  • Add honey and the melted dark chocolate to the dried candied fruit mixture mixing quickly.
  • Mix the flour, cocoa, and spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, black pepper, and chopped cloves.
  • Add some water and continue to mix
  • Drain the raisins and mix until you obtain a compact mixture.
  • Form a loaf and try to make it as regular as possible. Put the Italian peppered bread on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.

BAKING

  • Bake in a preheated static oven at 180 ° C or at 170 ° C in a convection oven for 25-30 minutes.
  • Let our peppered cake cool and then serve it in slices
Keyword italian christmas cake, panpepato, peppered bread

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