Panforte is a Christmas tradition in Tuscany, with its origins dating back to the Middle Ages in Siena. This delicious cross between cake and candy, with a soft and chewy texture, was intended exclusively for nobles and the clergy due to the presence of expensive and rare spices. Follow our recipe for Panforte di Siena and learn to make Tuscany’s oldest and noblest cake.
Panforte di Siena
Serves 8 - Prepare and cook in 25 minutes
- 260g unblanched almonds
- 300g granulated sugar
- 150g ‘00’ flour (or all-purpose flour)
- 160g candied orange, diced
- 160g candied citron, diced
- 150g honey
- 2g ground cinnamon
- 1g ground nutmeg
- 1g ground cloves
- 3g coriander powder
- 10g powdered sugar
-Wafer paper (optional)
Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius (°C). Heat the sugar and honey in a medium saucepan until the sugar has melted. Pour the hot liquid into a pyrex bowl and add the unblanched almonds, diced candied orange and diced candied citron. Begin to mix the ingredients with a spatula and add the flour — the mixture will be thick and heavy. Add cinnamon, ground cloves, coriander powder and finally the ground nutmeg. Mix the ingredients until well combined.
Grease an 8-inch round baking pan and line the base with wafer paper or baking parchment. Next, line the sides of the baking pan with baking parchment. Scrape the mixture into the prepared tin and use the back of a wet metal spoon to flatten the top. Using powdered sugar, dust the surface of the cake evenly.
Bake the panforte for 10-15 minutes until the surface is still soft but not sticky — it will firm up as it cools. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool for a couple of minutes. (N.B. You must unmold the cake and remove any baking parchment while the panforte is warm). Before serving, dust the surface with powdered sugar. Buon Appetito!