Christmas in Rome – and Panettone Bread Pudding with Bourbon Caramel SauceSTAFF — By Ann McElfresh on December 12, 2011 at 23:21
Story by staff writer Ann McElfresh. Photos Copyright © Ann McElfresh.
TOM AND I were lucky enough to live in Sicily when we were young . . . seems like a lifetime ago, yet we remember it as if it were yesterday.
One of the things we hoped to cross off our “bucket list” was to spend Christmas in Rome and attend Midnight Mass at the Vatican. A once in a lifetime chance!
I took very few pictures in Rome. Rather than view it through the camera lens, I EXPERIENCED Rome! We went on a carriage ride, rode the tube like a native, ate in restaurants that had no name, walked along the Tiber at night, and bought watercolors from an old man.
We saw all the sights during our week in the Eternal City: Trevi Fountain, the Coliseum, Vatican Museum, Sistine Chapel, the Spanish Steps (see feature photo), the Appian Way, the Steps of Constantine, the Forum—everything!
I also had my umbrella removed from my person, NEVER to be returned—because in the Vatican it was considered a weapon against the Pope. And this was PRE 9/11!
The food was sublime in Rome—in all of Italy! Throughout the country during Christmastime, panettone is served and sold everywhere. It is the baked good of the season. It’s sold at no other time—and, unlike fruitcake, EVERYONE enjoys it!
Ever since our return to the States, and for all these years, I’ve purchased, eaten and experimented with recipes using panettone. I’ve made things as simple as French Toast Dipped in Egg Nog (a favorite) to this recipe that I’ve adapted and adore—and now want to share with our readers on Milliver’s Travels.
If you ever get the opportunity to attend Midnight Mass at the Vatican, don’t miss it! In the meantime, here’s a taste of Christmas in Rome. . . .
CLICK THE LINK to visit Ann’s to-die-for recipe, complete with step-by-step photos, on her special foodie page:
In Italy, Christmas and New Year’s would be incomplete without a panettone on the table. One Italian legend traces the bread’s origins to a poor baker named Tonio, who developed a special bread to earn the dowry for his daughter to marry a nobleman. The delicious creation – known as pan de Tonio – was a hit and allowed Tonio to ensure his daughter’s fortuitous match.