5 from 2 votes

Panforte, a spicy Christmas cake from Siena

Course Dessert, Cake
Cuisine Tuscan
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8
Author Giulia


  • 350 g of almonds
  • 150 g of candied orange peel
  • 150 g of candied citron peel
  • 150 g of flour
  • 10 g of spices for panforte*
  • 150 g of honey
  • 150 g of icing sugar
  • a sheet of thin rice paper wafer


  • Preheat oven to 180°C and toast the almonds in the oven for a few minutes.
  • In a large bowl add the toasted almonds, the flour, the finely chopped orange and citron candied peel and the spices. Stir to mix.
  • Line with the rice paper wafer a 18 cm round cake tin (preferably a springform tin, it will be much easier to remove the panforte once baked).
  • Melt in a small saucepan over low heat the honey and the icing sugar with 3 tablespoons of water. When they are completely melted and become a thick golden syrup, remove the pan from the heat.
  • Pour the syrup into the bowl with all the other ingredients and stir with a spoon to mix everything: it will be a very hard dough.
  • Scoop the dough into the cake tin lined with wafer and smooth the surface with a spoon.
  • Dust the surface with icing sugar and bake for about 25 to 30 minutes, then remove the panforte from the oven, let cool slightly and then remove from the baking tin. If you wait until completely cold the caramelized sugar will stick to the tin and give you hard times - as it happened to me. If it happens, slightly warm the tin and the panforte will come out with no problems.
  • Once the panforte is cold, dust generously with icing sugar.
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