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Submitted by Anushka 11 June 2009

Makes 1 loaf, which is enough for certainly 8 people, perhaps 12 (depending on how big eaters they are)



100 g (3 1/2 oz) glacé citrus peel chopped,50 g (1 1/2 oz) raisins,50 g (1 1/2 oz) pine nuts,100 ml (3 1/2 fl oz) port,2 1/2 tsp dried yeast,100 ml (3 1/2 fl oz) water,500 g (1 lb) strong white bread flour,1 1/2 tsp salt,100 g (3 1/2 oz) unsalted butter softened,100 g (3 1/2 oz) caster sugar,zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange,3 eggs beaten,a dried broadbean and a small present,,For the topping,,egg glaze made with 1 egg yok beaten with 1 tbsp water,10 glacé cherries,2 segments each glacé orange lemon and lime peel,lump sugar crushed to decorate,apricot jam to glaze,,


1. Soak the glacé peel, raisins, and pine nuts in the port overnight. Sprinkle the yeast into the water in a bowl. Leave for 5 minutes; stir to dissolve. Mix the flour and salt together in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in the yeasted water.

2. Use a wooden spoon to draw enough of the flour into the yeasted water to form a soft paste. Cover the bowl with a tea towel. Leave to sponge until frothy and slightly risen, about 20 minutes.

3. Beat the butter with the sugar and lemon and orange zest together in a separate bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat well after each addition. Add the mixture to the flour well, thin mix in the flour from the sides to form a soft dough.

4. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured work surface. Knead until soft, smooth, silky, and elastic, about 10 minutes. Knead in the peel, raisins, and pine nuts until evenly distrubued.

5. Put the dough in a clean bowl and cover with a tea towel. Leave to rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours. Knock back, then leave to rest for 10 minutes.

6. Shape the dough into a couronne, then place it on a buttered baking sheet. Wrap a dried broad bean and a trinket or small present separately in greaseproof paper. Insert both tiny packages into the bottom of the shaped dough.

7. Cover the dough with a tea towel, and leave to prove until doubled in thickness, about 1 hour.

8. To make the topping. Brush the dough with the egg glaze then decorate with the glacé fruit and the crushed sugar. Bake in a preheated oven for 45 minutes until golden. Warm the apricot jam in a saucepan over low heat until liquid, then brush the top and sides of the bread with it to glaze. Leave to cool on a wire rack.

Bom apetite e Feliz Natal!


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Please note: this recipe has been submitted by a user of this website and is not one of Delia's. We cannot, therefore, take any responsibility if the recipe contains errors, does not work or is not as you expect it to be, although, as our users are keen cooks, we are confident it will be a great dish. Delia tests each of her recipes three times, which is why you can always be sure of success.



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