Panettone may have once sounded exotic, but these days, the dome-shaped Italian fruit bread is readily available on American grocery store shelves. But if you’re ready to expand your repertoire of global holiday breads, there are many more yeasty, doughy traditions to nibble on. And they all remind us how expensive, imported fruits — like Greek currants and Italian candied citrus peel — have long been a part of our most treasured Christmas foods.
Here, a brief tour of five other fruited holiday breads from around the world.
Norwegian julekake is made with a sweet dough, rich in eggs and sugar, and filled with candied fruit.
Courtesy of Molly Ingebretsen
Julekake is panettone’s distant Nordic cousin – but with a little bit of tropical zing.
“It’s basically a sweet dough base,” explains Kevin E. Hirman, president of Denny’s 5th Avenue Bakery in Minneapolis, Minn. “Very rich in eggs and sugar, and filled with candied fruit: orange peel, lemon peel, and re…