Eighteen days to go, and entirely typically, I haven’t started my Christmas shopping. I have made the cake, the puddings and the mincemeat though. And today, we made some Christmas presents too. I can’t recommend this panforte recipe too highly: It’s quite hard to make yourself give it away. If you decide to make some for your nearest and dearest, they’ll love you forever. The halva’s pretty good too.
When we first made this recipe, we were in France, hiding from the snow. Now we’re in England, hiding from the rain. You’ll know about the devastating floods that have hit Cumbria. We too have flooding, but nothing like so serious. Closed roads, large lakes where there ought to be farmers’ fields, and mud, mud, everywhere. Just the weather for licking the bowl out after a serious session in the kitchen.
I’m getting a bad case of cabin fever at the moment. The snow is turning to hard packed ice and/or slush and is not much fun to walk on. We’re not getting out much. So I’ve turned to comfort cooking.
About a week ago, my favourite food blogger, David Lebovitz wrote about his take on that wonderfully decadent Italian treat, Panforte. Two days after that, Kalba’s blog dropped into my in-box. She’d been tweaking his recipe whilst hiding from the snow on her side of the Ariège. Today it was my turn- and here’s my tweaked recipe
- 40g unsweetened cocoa powder, plus extra for dusting the tin
- 200g chopped toasted nuts- I used the hazelnuts I gathered with some friends early last Autumn, and the last of my walnuts
- 100g chopped dried prunes
- 110g flour
- 200g chopped candied orange peel
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
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