Holiday Pastries from the Wake Robin Kitchen

By December 31, 2018 Blog

Holidays mean connected with family – usually over food. Jesse Lauer, Wake Robin Pastry Chef, shares some of his favorite holiday baking recipes that are sure to bring family to the table.

Panettone (Traditional Italian Holiday Bread)

3/4 c. all-purpose flour
Just a pinch of 1 packet of active dry yeast (save the rest for later in the recipe)
1/3 c. room temperature water

– Combine everything in a small bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let it hang out in a cool place to rest overnight (at least 8 hours).

starter (from above)
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
remaining yeast from yesterday’s packet
1/3 c. sugar
1 1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 c. warm water
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
4 Tb. butter (1/2 stick), softened
2 cups of dried fruits (larger dried fruits should be chopped to about raisin size)
zest of 1 lemon & 1 orange

– Combine the flour, yeast, sugar & salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
– Add the water, eggs, vanilla and yesterday’s starter.
– With the dough hook attachment, mix until the ingredients have formed a shaggy dough.
– Add the butter and continue mixing until the dough is smooth and soft.
– Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to proof until the dough has doubled in size.
– Punch down the risen dough and knead in the zests and dried fruits.
– Transfer to a well-oiled panettone pan (or any pan with straight sides), cover, and allow to proof once again until the dough has just crested the top of the pan.
– While the dough is making its final rise, preheat your oven to 400°.
– Bake the panettone at 400° for 10 minutes.
– Drop the oven temperature to 375° and bake for another 10 minutes.
– Drop the oven to 350° and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes, tenting the top of the bread with aluminum foil if the crust is becoming too dark.
– When the bread is done is should be dark brown, sound hollow when tapped and the center of the bread should register 190° on a digital thermometer.
– Allow the bread to cool completely before removing from the pan.
– Slice & Enjoy!

Sufganiyot (Israeli Jelly Donuts):


2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 packet active dry yeast
1/2 tsp. salt
2 egg yolks
3/4 cup warm milk
2 Tb. butter
4-6 cups canola oil (for frying)
any flavor jam (for the filling)
powdered sugar (for dusting)

– Combine the flour, sugar, yeast, & salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
– Add the yolks, milk, & butter and, with the dough hook attachment, mix the dough until smooth and elastic.
– Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to proof until the dough has doubled in size.
– Transfer the risen dough to a lightly-floured work surface. Lightly flour the top, and roll out the dough to 1/4″ thick.
– With a 2″ round cookie cutter stamp out circles of dough and transfer to a greased cookie sheet. Discard the remaining scraps of dough (Donuts made from re-rolled dough scraps will be tough and disappointing).
– Cover dough and allow to proof until 1/2″ thick.
– Heat oil in a large pot to 350°.
– Using a spatula, transfer the donuts to the hot oil and fry for 1-2 minutes per side or until puffed and golden brown.  Transfer donuts to a paper towel-lined baking tray to cool.
– Poke a hole in the side of the donuts with a paring knife.
– Fill a piping bag with jam and gently fill the donuts (There will likely be a couple jammy blowouts before you get a feel for it)
– Dust with powdered sugar.
– Enjoy!


Wake Robin wishes everyone a very happy holiday season! If you make one of these recipes – send us a picture! We’d love to see your masterpieces!