Featured in the December 2008 Newsletter
Recommended Pairing: Beverino, Late Harvest, Zinfandel Port
3-ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
1 cup almonds, blanched, toasted and coarsely chopped
1 cup candied citrus (citron, lemon and/or orange peel)
1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
1/3 teaspoon all-spice
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
2/3 cup granulated white sugar
2/3 cups honey
Butter an 8-inch tart pan and line with parchment paper. First melt the chocolate in a stainless steel bowl over simmering water. Set aside. Then in a large bowl combine the nuts, candied fruit, spices, flour and cocoa powder. Place the sugar and honey in a saucepan and, over medium heat, bring to a boil. Using a candy thermometer, heat the mixture to the soft ball stage (240°F).
Remove from heat and stir the sugar/honey syrup and the melted chocolate into the chopped nuts and fruit mixture. The mixture will stiffen quickly, so once combined, transfer to the prepared pan. With damp hands, or the back of a spoon or spatula, evenly spread the Panforte, smoothing the top.
Bake at 300°F for 30-35 minutes or until the surface has browned. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack. While the Panforte is still warm, remove the sides of the pan and heavily dust the top of the cake with confectioner’s sugar. Gently rub the sugar into the cake.
Once the cake has completely cooled, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and store in a cool, dry place. Well wrapped, this cake will keep for several months. Serve this cake in thin slices as it is quite rich.