Panforte is a traditional Italian dessert containing fruits and nuts, and resembles fruitcake. Delicious for Christmas!
100g dark chocolate, chopped
2 cups toasted and coarsely chopped nuts (I used pistachios, almonds and hazelnuts)
1 cup dried fruit (I used cranberries, ginger and figs, citrus peel is also good)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 cup flour
1 tablespoon cocoa
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup Sweetree honey
Line a 20cm cake tin, preferably a loose bottom one
In a large bowl combine the nuts, fruit, spices, flour, and cocoa powder.
In a saucepan, stir together the sugar and honey. Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Using a candy thermometer continue to boil the mixture over medium heat, without stirring, until the temperature reaches the soft ball stage (116 degrees C).
While this is happening melt your chocolate. Then once the sugar/honey syrup gets to 116C remove from heat and stir in the melted chocolate into the chopped nut 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, evenly spread the Panforte, smoothing the top.
Bake in a 150 degree C oven for about 30 - 35 minutes or until the surface has fine blisters. 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 icing 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 several months.
Created by Chef - Vicki Ravlich-Horan (Nourish Magazine
& Feast Cooking School