What Is An Easter Dove Cake?

Easter Dove Cake or Colomba Di Pasque (Colomba Pasquale), is a traditional Easter cake from Italy. According to Wikipedia:

The colomba was commercialised by the Milanese baker and businessman Angelo Motta as an Easter version of the Christmas speciality Panettone that Motta foods were producing.

This recipe has three dough, the first dough works as a starter, it is a long one and should be prepared one day before. If you look for a quick one, just make the starter and combine all the ingredients like Panettone, rise the dough, shape and bake.

Easter Dove Cake Dough Ingredients

1st Starter Dough

  • 40 g          whole milk, at room temperature
  • 100 g        water, at room temperature
  • 140 g        all-purpose flour
  • 5 g            dry yeast
2nd Dough
  • 100 g         all-purpose flour
  • 20 g           confectioners' sugar
  • 20 g           unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut in two pieces
3rd Dough
  • 210 g         all-purpose flour
  • 120 g         confectioners' sugar
  • 3                regular eggs
  • 80 g           unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1/2 tsp       salt
  • 25 g           candied fruits
  • 20 g           Candied Orange Peel, cut into cubes
  • 60 g           dark / golden raisins or Mix (Optional)
  • 40 g           dark chocolate chips drops (Optional)
  • 1/2 tsp       vanilla extract, or 1 Vanilla Bean
Ingredients For The Icing
  • 1                 egg white
  • 40 g            almonds, blanched and peeled
  • 40 g             hazelnuts, peeled
  • 20 g             cornstarch
  • 40 g             brown sugar
To Garnish The Easter Dove
  • 10 g             whole almonds
  • 10 g             silvered almonds
  • 20 g             Pearl Sugar
  1. Make the starter with the 1st dough ingredients:Stir the flour, yeast, milk and water together. Mix well with a wooden spoon or spatula, until smooth.
  2. Cover the starter with a plastic wrap film, and let rest in a warm  place or in the oven (depending on the weather), for at least 1-2 hours, until it has tripled in volume.
  1. Transfer the risen dough to a dough maker (or work manually), on medium speed, then add the 2nd dough ingredients, starting by sugar, and gradually add the flour, blend until well mixed, then add the softened butter, one by one, until you get an homogeneous batter.
  2. Laminate the dough onto the work surface, for 2-5 minutes (you should feel the smoothness of the dough with you fingers).
  3. Shape the dough, transfer to a glass bowl, cover with a plastic wrap film, and let it rise in a warm place, at least 1-2 hours, until it doubled in volume.
  1. Work with the 3rd dough ingredients: First, soak the raisins in cold water. Proceed with the risen dough like in step 3, starting by adding the sugar, gradually the flour, and one by one the eggs, and salt.
  2. Let the dough to absorb the ingredients, then add the melted butter, the vanilla extract, candied orange,candied fruits, and chocolate drops.
  3. Drain well the raisins, dry with a kitchen towels, and incorporate into the dough. Whisk again about 10-20 minutes, on medium speed, until you get a smooth and homogeneous dough, all the ingredients, candied fruits and raisins should be well combined.
  4. Shape the dough and transfer into a glass bowl, cover and let it to rise in the refrigerator, over the night, about 16 minutes.
  1. The next day, take out the dough from the refrigerator, and let it to rise in a warm place or in the oven, about 2-3 hours.
  2. Slightly flour your hands, and shape the dough as a dove, in a dove shaped mold. Let the dove to rise about 4 hours in a warm place.
  3. When the dove is risen, prepare the glaze: Blend the almonds, hazelnuts, and the brown sugar in a blender. Add the cornstarch, the egg white and mix all the ingredients well.
  1. Sprinkle carefully the glaze over the risen dove, garnish with wholes almonds, silvered almonds and the pearl sugar.
  2. Bake The Easter Dove Cake in a moderate oven, about 45 to 60 minutes. Ensure that the dove is cooked, by inserting a toothpick. Cool on a wire rack.

Easter Dove Cake Recipe  | La Dorure French Pastry & Desserts Magazine

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