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Baked Panetonne French Toast Recipe & A Chocolate Baking Contest

Let me start this post by saying...I hate fruit cake. That weird, solid block of strong tasting bread is NOT something that means Christmas to me. In fact, I avoid it all costs, and can't remember even getting it near my mouth for years. So liking Panetonne is weird. I mean, isn't it kind of the same thing? Panetonne is basically the Italian version of fruitcake. But surprise, surprise, those freaking Italians have found a way to make it taste less like something your dotty grandma made 12 years ago, and more like angels prepared it at a Milanese bakery and then dropped it off at your local supermarket.

Two Pounds of Panetonne = Heaven

Although traditionally it is just sliced and eaten with a hot drink or a glass of wine, I wanted to spruce it up and create a holiday brunch item. Enter... Baked French Toast Panetonne With Spiced Apples.
Yes, you read that right. Put your tongue back in your mouth, you're drooling all over the keyboard. Here's the recipe for an unbeatable brunch on a cold morning.

Baked French Toast Panetonne With Spiced Apples

1. Slice two apples thinly, and cook them on a medium heat with 1 teaspoon of butter (or light olive oil) 1 tablespoon of honey and a teaspoon of cinnamon. 

2. When apples are soft, place them at the bottom of a baking dish. 

3. Layer slices of Panetonne on top of the baked apples, covering the entire dish.

4. Mix up 2 eggs, 1/4 cup of milk, 1 teaspoon of vanilla and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Pour this over the entire dish, making sure all of the bread has some moisture. 

5. Bake for 35 minutes, uncovered, at 350 degrees. 

7. Serve warm with Greek yogurt if a breakfast item, or with ice cream or custard for dessert.

The recipe will really only serve two hungry people for breakfast, or maybe 4 for dessert. It can easily be doubled or tripled if you want to make it for a larger crowd. I think it would have been great if I sprinkled on a few extra raisins before baking it as well--next time!

To counteract that little slice of heaven up above, let me switch gears to running for a bit. I may have been a little disappointed over my half on Saturday, but that just means I'll have to work that much harder before the marathon. Here's what I have been up to the last few days:

Sunday = Easy 4 mile run. Less painful that I expected. I was mistaken.

Monday = Crazy sore legs. Whoops. Took off from running and enjoyed an hour of yoga instead.

Tuesday = 10 x 400 intervals at 1:57 (7:48 pace). Surprisingly, this felt...good? 8 miles total.

Wednesday = 7 miles easy. Was supposed to be a quick run but I had music on and just spaced out. Love when that happens!

Proud Wifey Alert!

And now, if you will allow me to brag for a second. Let it be known that I have zero cool hidden talents. What you see is really all you get. So I live vicariously through my husband Tim. He can build anything, fix my computer every time I do something dumb, play guitar like Slash, and sing to make my heart melt. Except he's also humble, and hides just how awesome he is a lot of the time. So here's me bragging for him. He loaded a bunch of music he's been working onto a cool site, and I put a widget on the right hand side of my blog so you can just press play a hear one of my favorite songs. He sings, he plays the instruments, he puts it all together. Don't ask me how, just listen. I won't be held responsible if you can't stop humming it!

Love my sexy rockstar!

I've bragged, now it's your turn. Are you proud of your child, husband, wife, sister or dog for doing something amazing? Tell me about it!

What is the ultimate Christmas breakfast food for you?
Usually breakfast is a blur because we can't open presents until we've eaten (old family rule!) so it's normally a bowl of cereal eaten quickly. But I guess now I'm old enough to branch out, and I like the idea of making this dish as a breakfast tradition for the holidays. 

In the top picture, you can see I have two loaves of Panetonne. I used the one with raisins for this dish, but there is also one with chocolate. Any suggestions for a way to create a great dish using that one? It's basically a rich chocolate bread, so you can't go wrong. Give me your suggestions, and the one I pick to make will win a special prize from me! Just leave your ideas as a comment, and I will pick one this weekend. Thanks!

I received the Bauducco Panetonne for free through the Foodbuzz Tastemaker program, but the opinions and recipes are my own.


  1. WOW! He is amazing! LOVE it so much. Like really really love it. You might have to share more!

    Here is my pick from Giada.... TRIFLES!!!

  2. My last name is Italian and I've never heard of Panetonne. Good thing I'm just married to an Italian, so I can claim ignorance!

    Our Christmas food is Swedish Tea ring. It's basically a HUMUNGOUS cinnamon roll. soooooo good. I kind of want to make some this weekend.

    Your husband is awesome. I'm pretty proud of Mike. He ran an entire half marathon speedy fast with NO shoes!

  3. That is so awesome about your husband. I will have to hop over and listen when I get home from work.

    I hate fruit cake too but would definitely be willing to try this concoction. Yummo! Awesome workout for the week girl and great job with the 800s!

  4. I always make cinnamon rolls for breakfast on Christmas. I think anything with cinnamon would work though!

    Your husband is so talented!
    I wish I could play an instrument!

  5. I've never had Panetonne bread--but possibly using it instead of lady fingers for mocha-ish Tiramisu or bread pudding!

  6. that looks sooo good and HEY my husband is a guitar player in a band too! yay us! I am also going to my brother's cd release party in toronto tonight. should be fun! YAY TIM!

  7. I am going to HAVE to make some French toast soon. OHHHH I seriously forgot about French toast. I have no ideas for your chocolate bread... but I can't wait to hear what you DO do with it.

  8. Mmmmm....I love panetonne. I think a trifle would be really good. With custard and raspberries. So so yummy.

  9. I'm one of the few people on earth who likes traditional fruit cake. I don't get it's good stuff. :)

    Love the music! You've got a keeper.

  10. Oh that looks way too good! Perfect Christmas morning treat. And how cool is your hubs! I'll have to check out his stuff.

  11. Yummy. I have to make that!

    I listened to the hubs! Good stuff! It reminds me of Alice in Chains / Soundgarden... in a great way!

  12. Yummo alert. Good for you bragging up the hubs. We should all be proud to be proud! I think the Scheers are a fairly talentless couple, but we are super good at being in love with each other. Does that count?

  13. I just listened to your husband's music, it's amazing that he created that and was able to record it to sound like it's multiple people!

    I wish I were more handy around the house, with computers, etc.

  14. I would brag about my dog Connor (who is my assistance dog) when I picked him up from the kennel he spent hours alerting to pointless things - it was so sweet - the boy does love his job:-)

    The ultimate Christmas breakfast? Pancakes with lots of maple syrup.

  15. I have a deep hatred of any bread with "stuff" in it. Deep.

    My husband is literally the smartest person I've ever met. That's why I chose to spawn with him.

  16. Wow - your husband sounds really good. That's awesome.

    Quiche for Christmas breakfast for me! Especially this one:


  17. Turn the chocolate bread into bread pudding. It'll be delish and you won't regret it!

  18. this sounds great!! He is really talented!

    And your dish looks really Gram makes a Christmas Fruitcake that is not like the typical crappy weird cake, but this rum rich moist bread with dates and nuts...mmm

  19. We're pretty low-key with breakfast food. "First breakfast" is always cinnamon rolls (I swear my mom just does it now to wake me up with the delicious smell) and then "second breakfast" is usually scrambled eggs. it Christmas yet? :)

  20. ...oh and I don't have a child, husband, or children, but my dog is pretty awesome. We snuggle.

  21. I would use the chocolate Pantonne to make either French toast (with a powdered sugar drizzle) OR bread pudding with whiskey sauce. I don't think that you could go wrong either way. I am hungry just thinking about it!!!!

  22. Um your hubby just went up a gazillion points for me. Holy cow. I would make him sing to me to wake me up every.single.morning. and then to go to sleep at night too. And any other open opportunity throughout the day. Panetonne is huge for us, especially at Christmas. My grandparent are both super Itals and it is a must have in their house. I just eat it straight up :)

  23. He's brilliant, reminds me of a local band in South Africa when I was a younger whippersnapper a few years back ;-)

  24. That French toast looks awesome. I've always seen Panetonne in stores, and my family gets one around the holidays, but I've never tried it. I ma, however, if I can get my hands on a chocolate one!

    My suggestion (and I'm no foodie) would be to make some sort of warm, grilled Panini-type sandwich with it?

  25. you must always bragg about the hubs, its a wife's job, right? Very cool site! He's got talent.

  26. That does look like a fun xmas breakfast! Maybe I'll let my mom know. We usually have coffee and fruit while we open gifts, and a big brunch after.

    I'm so proud of my husband for running his second half marathon and shaving more than 20 minutes off his time!

    I'd also like to mention he's STILL at work (it's 8:30 at night) working on grad work in hopes he can take the day off tomorrow to spend with me and my parents. He's awesome.

  27. That food looks so good!!! Awesome pic of your hubby!!!

  28. I'm proud of my husband everyday. He works a crucial (yet, for some reason, under-appreciated) job in military intelligence, deals with ridiculous amounts and sources of stress, and still manages to come home and be an amazing and supportive husband to a crazy random woman like me.

  29. OH OH OH!

    This book has the best pannettone recipe EVER. The author is Italian, so she collected all of these traditiona recipes, and does one that is essentially thinly sliced pannettone layered with pastry cream and covered in sweet cream... it's a traditiona holiday dessert. You can prob. find the book in Barnes & Noble if you don't want to buy it--I know it's steep on Amazon. But it's got lots of pannettone recipes, I think.

  30. Wow, no wonder you're proud! That's a great song!! My Mum makes fruitcake every year but I always pass in favor of extra Christmas cookies :-)

  31. That's sweet to hear you brag on the hubs! They are pretty amazing most of the time!

  32. i JUST NOW finally listened to your hub's music that is linked on side. SO GOOOOOOOD!!!!!!!! tell him he rocks! :) is he playing with anyone since you moved to georgia?


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