Panforte with Crème Fraîche

  • serves 1
Anna Olson
Anna Olson Sugar

Panforte in Italian means “strong bread” and is best eaten in smaller portions because of it’s sweet, rich flavour. The combination of dried fruits, nuts and chocolate cooked together with honey makes for a sweet ending perfect after a holiday meal. Cut it into squares to eat as petit fours.

15 Ratings
Directions for: Panforte with Crème Fraîche



¾ cup whole hazelnuts, peeled, toasted and chopped

¾ cup whole almonds, toasted and chopped

¾ cup candied orange peel, chopped

6 Tbsp candied lemon peel, chopped

6 Tbsp raisins

6 oz dark chocolate, bittersweet or semisweet, cut into pieces

6 Tbsp all purpose flour

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp allspice

¼ tsp cloves

¼ tsp nutmeg

dash of black pepper

½ cup + 2 tbsp sugar

½ cup + 2 tbsp honey

1 ½ Tbsp butter

Crème Fraîche

2 cup whipping cream

2 Tbsp buttermilk

lemon juice

To Assemble



1. Preheat oven to 300º F.

2. Butter and line a 10-inch springform pan with parchment paper, on the sides and the bottom. Butter parchment (or spray with food release).

3. In a large bowl, combine nuts, peel, raisins, chocolate, flour, and spices.

4. In pot over medium heat, cook sugar, honey and butter until it reaches a temperature of 245 F (about 8 to 10 minutes). Working quickly, pour syrup over nut mixture, stirring until chocolate is melted. The panforte stiffens quickly, so immediately spoon mixture into pan and spread to edges of pan.

5. Bake for 30 minutes. Allow to cool in the pan completely. Wrap and store at room temperature.

Crème Fraîche

1. Stir together cream and buttermilk or lemon juice. Place in a clear cup or bowl, preferably plastic. Cover with plastic wrap.

2. Place bowl in hot water, up to the level of the cream and store in a warm place (near oven, radiator) for 24 to 48 hours. You will know when it’s ready because you will see the thin-textured whey settled at the bottom.

3. Chill before using, being sure not stir whey into crème fraiche (it will thin out crème fraiche). To ensure whey does not become mixed in, gently scrape cream away from whey when spooning out.

To Assemble

1. Cut panforte into slender wedges, 2 per plate, and serve with a quenelle of unsweetened creme fraiche. A candied orange peel curl or some chopped toasted nuts make a nice garnish. Panforte can be kept in an airtight container for up to a month! (Honey is one of nature’s best preservatives)

See more: Dessert, Bake, Rice/Grain, Italian, Snack, Summer, Fruit, Nuts

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