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Panettone Stuffing Squares

by . Featured in NIGELLISSIMA
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Introduction

I have written a recipe for panettone stuffing before: the sweet seasonal fruit bread was cubed, toasted and mixed with Italian sausage; this is very different, not least because I see it not as an accompaniment to the turkey but to be served, at parties or over drinks, in small squares, like savoury brownies.

As ever, feel free to substitute the plainer pandoro if you wish, though I do think the rich fruitiness is part of this unconventional canapé’s charm.

I have written a recipe for panettone stuffing before: the sweet seasonal fruit bread was cubed, toasted and mixed with Italian sausage; this is very different, not least because I see it not as an accompaniment to the turkey but to be served, at parties or over drinks, in small squares, like savoury brownies.

As ever, feel free to substitute the plainer pandoro if you wish, though I do think the rich fruitiness is part of this unconventional canapé’s charm.

Panettone Stuffing Squares
Photo by Petrina Tinslay

Ingredients

Makes: 48 small squares

Metric Cups
  • 4 echalion shallots or banana shallots or 2 small onions (approx. 250g / 8 oz total)
  • 2 eating apples (approx. 250g / 8 oz total)
  • 375 grams pancetta slices (or rindless streaky bacon)
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 4 large leaves fresh sage
  • 3 tablespoons garlic infused olive oil
  • 200 grams vacuum-packed chestnuts
  • zest and juice of 1 unwaxed lemon
  • 500 grams panettone (or pandoro), slightly staled, sliced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 splash of olive oil (for greasing)
  • 4 echalion shallots or banana shallots or 2 small onions (approx. 250g / 8 oz total)
  • 2 eating apples (approx. 250g / 8 oz total)
  • 14 ounces pancetta slices (or rindless streaky bacon)
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 4 large leaves fresh sage
  • 3 tablespoons garlic flavored oil
  • 1½ cups vacuum-packed chestnuts
  • zest and juice of 1 unwaxed lemon
  • 1 pound panettone (or pandoro), slightly staled, sliced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 splash of olive oil (for greasing)

Method

  1. Peel and halve the shallots (or peel and quarter the onions) and quarter and core the apples, and roughly cut up the pancetta (or bacon). Drop the shallot or onion and the apple pieces into the bowl of a food processor along with the celery sticks, snapped in half, and the sage leaves, and process in a short burst to start the chopping, before adding the roughly cut pancetta (or bacon), and then blitz at full pelt until finely chopped. Don’t worry about the mixture’s wetness; mush is what I expect. You can chop everything by hand, though; in which case, don’t expect to get everything as minced as it would in the processor. Anything goes.
  2. Heat the garlic oil in a wide, heavy-bottomed pan and fry this mixture, stirring every now and again, for 10–15 minutes, until the vegetables et al. have softened.
  3. Remove the fried mixture to a large bowl, crumble in the chestnuts, grate in the lemon zest and squeeze in the juice, then tear and crumble in the panettone, and – I use my hands for this – combine everything into a squidgy, fragrant paste. (If you’re making this in advance, leave it to cool at this stage, then cover and transfer to the fridge where it can stand for up to 2 days).
  4. When you are ready to cook this, preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6/400ºF and let the stuffing come to room temperature. Uncover the bowl, beat the eggs and mix them in, then spread the mixture into a foil tray or lightly greased ovenproof dish (approx. 30 x 20cm / 9 x 13 inches), and bake for 25–30 minutes, until the edges brown and begin to come away from the tray or dish and a cake tester comes out clean.
  5. For canapés, let the tray cool for 30 minutes and then cut into 48 little bite-sized squares– or into 24 larger pieces to accompany a roast, if you’d prefer.
  1. Peel and halve the shallots (or peel and quarter the onions) and quarter and core the apples, and roughly cut up the pancetta (or bacon). Drop the shallot or onion and the apple pieces into the bowl of a food processor along with the celery sticks, snapped in half, and the sage leaves, and process in a short burst to start the chopping, before adding the roughly cut pancetta (or bacon), and then blitz at full pelt until finely chopped. Don’t worry about the mixture’s wetness; mush is what I expect. You can chop everything by hand, though; in which case, don’t expect to get everything as minced as it would in the processor. Anything goes.
  2. Heat the garlic oil in a wide, heavy-bottomed pan and fry this mixture, stirring every now and again, for 10–15 minutes, until the vegetables et al. have softened.
  3. Remove the fried mixture to a large bowl, crumble in the chestnuts, grate in the lemon zest and squeeze in the juice, then tear and crumble in the panettone, and – I use my hands for this – combine everything into a squidgy, fragrant paste. (If you’re making this in advance, leave it to cool at this stage, then cover and transfer to the fridge where it can stand for up to 2 days).
  4. When you are ready to cook this, preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6/400ºF and let the stuffing come to room temperature. Uncover the bowl, beat the eggs and mix them in, then spread the mixture into a foil tray or lightly greased ovenproof dish (approx. 30 x 20cm / 9 x 13 inches), and bake for 25–30 minutes, until the edges brown and begin to come away from the tray or dish and a cake tester comes out clean.
  5. For canapés, let the tray cool for 30 minutes and then cut into 48 little bite-sized squares– or into 24 larger pieces to accompany a roast, if you’d prefer.

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What 3 Others have said

  • @coachdave, if you already have an account on nigella.com, you can easily bookmark recipes to your 'my nigella' page by clicking on the "N" in the pink block underneath each recipe.

    Posted by Annezila on 19th December 2014
  • How do I add this to my recipes please.

    Posted by coachdave on 18th December 2014
  • This is really delicious - a very good accompaniment to a glass of prosecco!

    Posted by Foodycat on 17th December 2013
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