Panettone filled with ice-cream, brandy soaked fruit and Vino Cotto

Panettone filled with ice-cream, brandy soaked fruit and Vino Cotto

Panettone is the Italian traditional Christmas cake which has a soft and buttery texture and full of candied fruit and raisins.  It’s wonderful just as it is, but in a our family we stuff the Panettone with ice-cream and brandy soaked fruits.  We use Vino Cotto to soak the cavity of the Panettone to add moisture and give it a wonderful flavour.  It’s always a winning dessert.  Buy a good quality Panettone or Pandoro (this variety does not have the candid fruit or raisins) for this recipe.

This recipe is best made a day in advance to allow flavours to develop and the ice-cream to set.


1 1kg Panettone or Pandoro
2 ltr tub of good quality vanilla ice-cream
2 tablespoons well-toasted slivered almonds
1 tablespoon of raisins, optional
2 tablespoon of cranberries, optional
½ tablespoon dried mango, cut thinly, optional
2 tablespoons of Gran Mariner, optional
2 tablespoons of Vino Cotto
¼  cup Vino Cotto
2 tablespoons roasted almond flakes
icing sugar to dust


Prepare a deep 13cm bowl for the panettone to snugly fit into with enough cling wrap to cover the entire panettone.  The bowl must be suitable for freezing.  Otherwise use a freezer bag.

In a bowl soak the dried fruit with the liqueur for at least ½ hour or overnight in the refrigerator.  Stir occasionally.

Remove panettone from it’s paper casing. Turn the panettone upside down.

Using a serrated knife cut into the cake 2 cm from the edge, creating a disk approx 3cm thick.

Reserve this disk to seal the panettone once it’s filled with the ice-cream mixture.

Carve away at the panettone using a knife or spoon to help remove the core portion of the panettone, taking care to leave the walls intact.  The idea is to create a hollow cavity for the ice-cream.  Leave at least 3cm from the head of the panettone.

Reserve the cut away pieces for a snack.

Place panettone into lined bowl, bottoms up.

Remove ice-cream tub from freezer and leave at room temperature for 5 minutes to soften.  Place ice-cream in a large bowl and sprinkle in the almonds and soaked fruit with any remaining liqueur.  Mix well to combine.  Add in 2 tablespoons of Vino Cotto and mix through.

Using a pastry brush, soak the walls of the panettone with ¼ cup of Vino Cotto

Fill the cavity with the ice-cream mixture.

Place the panettone disk on the opening to seal the bottom.  Cover tightly with cling wrap or  foil.  Place a weight on the panettone to help seal the disk.

Place in freezer, bottoms up, for at least 10 hours or overnight.

Just prior to serving, take bowl out of freezer.  Gently tip panettone onto a serving plate, decorate with roasted almond flakes and a light dust of icing-sugar.  Serve frozen, cut into wedges.


Buy the Vino Cotto you need for this recipe online. Click here.