Preparing a Colomba/Dove is an experience:it takes time ,patience and determination.

It takes more then 9 yours working, letting it rise and baking but it’s  a great satisfaction.

Considering that Dove is the Symbol pf Peace, don’t you think it needs time, care and love  but it’s worthwhile ? watch the video on Toscana Mia Youtube Channel.

500 gr of flour 0 /Manitoba + 100 gr. to work              100 ml of water

20 gr of brewer’s yeast                  200 g of butter        170 gr of sugar

5 yolks                                               30 ml of milk            1 tablespoon of vanilla essence

 grated peel of 1 lemon                  grated peel of an orange

 1 pinch of salt                                 50 g of candied fruit (optional)

Ingredients for the almond glaze

 2 egg whites                                   50 gr of granulated sugar               50 gr of  almonds 

50 gr of sugar grains or grated almonds and colourful sugar decoration

 First dough

Make the  biga (chariot) by dissolving the yeast in 100 ml of warm water. Add 140/150 g of flour and start mixing .Knead the dough until a soft dough is obtained.

Make a cross on the dough and put it in a container in which you will have put some lukewarm water.

Close the bowl and let it rise for 30 minutes. After rising, the dough will be doubled in volume and will float  on the surface

Second dough

Separate the eggs in a glass  5 yolks.In a glass 3  egg white.In a glass 2  egg white

Grate the lemon and the orange peel.

In a large bowl pour the remaining flour (350 g of flour), sugar, the 5 yolks, 100 g of softened butter, a pinch of salt, a tablespoon of vanilla essence and the grated peel of lemon and orange

Start working the dough by adding the milk until you get a workable dough .

Take the biga,/chariot out of the water delicately. 

Drain it from the water and add it to the dough. 

Transfer the dough to a board and work until a soft, homogeneous and slightly sticky dough is obtained, then put in a bowl in the oven (off )to rise for 1 hour

Third dough

Take the dough and add 50 gr of softened butter

Work vigorously for at least 10 minutes then put the dough back in the bowl in the oven off to rise for 4 hours

After leavening the dough will be doubled in volume.

Fourth dough

Take the dough and add the last 50 grams of softened butter and if you want candied fruit

Knead the dough for 15 minutes, then lay it in the dove mold

Put the dove in the oven (off )and let it rise for 2/3 hours or until the cake reaches almost the height of the edge of the mold

Fifth step 

Remove the dove from the oven and cover it  with a cloth .

Turn on the oven and preheat it to 180°C/360°F.

Meanwhile, prepare the glaze by beating 2 egg whites in a bowl with the caster sugar. Rub the glaze obtained on the dove and sprinkle with the sugar/decoration and almonds.

Bake the Colomba in the preheated oven for 30 minutes at 180°C/360°F ° then set the oven temperature to 190°C/380°F and continue cooking for another 10 minutes if you want more colour on top. 

Remove the Colomba from the oven and let it cool on a wire rack, if possible upside down .

Serve your Colomba/Dove Cake the next day and enjoy your long work .

Watch the Video on Toscana Mia Youtube Channel.