I've always been intrigued by those fancy cake things you see in the grocery stores around this time of the year. They have big ribbons on them and they're wrapped up (or boxed prettily) and they say things in Italian on the side.
But I never thought of buying one until last year when my friend Bob said are you KIDDING? they are FANTASTIC, you have to get the TRE MARIE brand!
So this year I kinda hunted around different chain grocers until I found one that sold Tre Marie. And I bought one.
Around 11 o'clock that night I got hungry.
I decided that this is a very big cake. Except that it looks more like bread than cake. And 1/12th of it is 300 calories, except do I really want to eat 1/12th of a chocolate-free breadlike cake in one sitting? Having discovered a nutritional breakdown in English on the underside of the wrapping, I am thinking no. I am also thinking it's good that I don't hate sultanas.
A very thin slice is enough.
The next day, various friends of Italian descent or Italian-by-marriageness informed me that panettone keeps forever, and is in fact meant as a bread thing to eat with coffee or tea or something otherwise breakfasty. So I tried it again in the afternoon and thought of tea (which I was not in a position to drink at the time) and I liked it better...
... though not as much as I think I'd like the smaller Tre Marie panettone I saw in the store - the one with the custard-looking filling.
(Nah. It still wouldn't have any chocolate in it.)