During the Christmas Holidays, every kind of delicacy lays the tables of Italians. Each region produces its own specialty, in a triumph of spieces, dried fruit, honey and sparkling candied fruits.
And then, there are the most common Christmas desserts, those that, from North to South, cannot be missing on any table.
First of all, the Panettone, born in Milan, but loved all over Italy. Everywhere in Italy, there is no pastry that does not offer its own: classic, with candied fruits and sultanas, but also in a thousand other flavours, with chocolate, with dried fruits, berries, creams, glazes, liqueurs and many other novelties, that Italian pastry chefs churn out from year to year.
The historic “adversary” of Panettone is Pandoro, the traditional Christmas dessert of the city of Verona. The Christmas “competition” between Panettone and Pandoro lovers is a great one classic of the Italian Christmas tradition. Some love the richness of Panettone, other like the simplicity of Pandoro. And every Christmas, this greedy diatribe animates the table of the Italians.
In recent years, to double the gluttony of Panettone and Pandoro, quite often they are tried together with pistachio speadable cream or other fresh chocolate, coffee or mascarpone creams.
The other great classico of Italian Christmas table is Nougat. It is an ancient dessert, of Arab origin, made of dried fruit, sugar and honey and often covered with chocolate. Almost all Italian cities have their typical nougat, but the most famous is that of the city of Cremona and that one of Benevento area, where in the small town of San Marco dei Cavoti they produce the famous “Croccantino”.
And we cannot forget Cantucci, the typical Tuscan biscuits with almonds, usually eaten soaking them in “Vin Santo” or other liqueur wines. They require a double cooking and have the typical shape of the cut loaf.
During Christmas time, in Italy, sweets and biscuits are also eaten at breakfast and as a snack, preparated at home or given away and often used to decorate the Christmas tree.
Italian Christmas sweets have the great task of creating the magic atmosphere of the party, with family and good food.