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Vegan Italian Pandoro

I must say this year I am very excited about Christmas, I’m looking forward to spending some proper time with my family and friends and in-laws and of course eating until I drop on the floor like a ball! When I was little I would eat endless portions of Pandoro, this is a typical Italian cake that we eat around Christmas time. It is very similar to Panettone but doesn’t have raisins and candied fruit and is usually really soft and buttery. I haven’t had a Pandoro in ages so this year I spent some time in the kitchen trying and trying to veganise the recipe. I was inspired by my mum who made a delicious and beautiful vegan Panettone for me and gave me the lovely paper tin I am using for this Pandoro. Ok let’s get you started, before we begin I must warn you that you need to arm yourself with plenty of patience, as this is a very long (and I want to stress LONG) process. The recipe itself is super easy but the length of the method is really tiring, so don’t you even start unless you can bare to spend 12 hours on this! Lol, I was planning on making a little video with all the steps and taking pictures but I ran out of time and didn’t manage, however, I wanted to share this recipe as this could be a lovely gift and treat to share with friends and family over Christmas. If you find it too complicated then leave a comment and I’ll try my best to make a little video.

What do you need:

1kg tin - my mum gave me a paper one, I am sure you can find that easily online

450g flour (Manitoba) Type "0" organic Manitoba flour for panettone, pandoro, colomba and Italian traditional enriched breads. I had a look on Amazon and you can find it there, luckily my local grocery had it too.

125g brown sugar

170g margarine

18g yeast

230ml soya

Vanilla extract



We will be mixing our mix many times! Here is how we start: mix 15g yeast, 60ml of lukewarm milk, one spoon of sugar, 50g flour in that order (remember to mix the flour in last). Then let it rest for an hour, leaving it inside the mixing bowl covered with a towel. We call this “Lievitino”, now mix the “Lievitino” with the following wet ingredients, then add the flour and mix well (3g yeast, 50ml milk, one spoon of sugar, 30g margarine, 200g flour). Make this into a dough and again let it rest for one hour.

Second time: take your first dough that you had rested for an hour and in a food processor add 200g flour, 120 ml milk, 100g sugar, 30g margarine, 1tsp turmeric, a pinch of salt and 1tsp of vanilla extract. Once you have obtained a consistency similar to a bread bun start kneeding with your hands on a surface where you have sprinkled some flour (to prevent the mix sticking). Let it rest for 2 hours, and then let it rest for one hour in the fridge. Then take the dough and make a square with your dough (by kneeding it), with a brush splash some margarine all over the surface and fold in all corners - you are trying to block the margarine inside your dough. Then fold again in 3 and place the dough into a plastic bag and let it rest for 20 minutes in the fridge. Then repeat the process of folding in three and resting in the fridge a second time.

Then kneed the dough again and stretch it to make a square and fold the borders in again- you want to almost have a ball of dough at this point - then place it into the paper tin and let it rest for 4-6 hours until it almost come out from your tin! Then cook it for 15 minutes at 170 and then for 50 minutes at 160. Sprinkle some icing sugar on top and ta da you did it!

Give it a go, it is truly a wonderful cake! Don't forget to share your recipes with us using @leles_london and #LelesRecipes. And don't forget the most important thing; add a little love to all your recipes - it's the most important ingredient.

Have a fantastic Christmas everyone!

Valentina x

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