Italian Bakery Breaks Holiday Record With a 308-Pound Panettone

Marco Bertorello, Getty Images
Marco Bertorello, Getty Images

Italians have been serving panettone at Christmas for centuries, and now a bakery in Milan has put an over-the-top twist on the traditional treat. As The Local reports, San Gregorio Patisserie now holds the record for the world’s largest panettone.

The leavened fruit cake clocked in at 308 pounds and measured over 6 feet tall when it was removed from its special oven. Baking a regular panettone is already a labor-intensive process: from cultivating the yeast, to baking the dough and cooling the cakes, it can take several days to turn out a single loaf. The bakers at San Gregorio needed even more time than usual to ensure their super-sized creation was cooked all the way through.

The Milan patisserie first opened in 1945, and panettone is one of their signature items. They ship their loaves all over the world, with 200 going just to New York City at this time of year. Their recipe includes all the traditional panettone components—like raisins and candied citrus peels—but the bakery’s owners Angelo Bernasconi and Savino Moretti credit their success to their mother dough. (According to The Local, legend has it that the master baker they inherited it from originally added a bit of horse urine for an extra kick.)

Whether that story’s true or not, holiday shoppers were happy to sample the record-breaking panettone when it was distributed for free at the Victor Emmanuel II shopping gallery in Milan. The towering confection produced 1200 slices in total.

Marco Bertorello, Getty Images

[h/t The Local]

Looking to Downsize? You Can Buy a 5-Room DIY Cabin on Amazon for Less Than $33,000

Five rooms of one's own.
Five rooms of one's own.
Allwood/Amazon

If you’ve already mastered DIY houses for birds and dogs, maybe it’s time you built one for yourself.

As Simplemost reports, there are a number of house kits that you can order on Amazon, and the Allwood Avalon Cabin Kit is one of the quaintest—and, at $32,990, most affordable—options. The 540-square-foot structure has enough space for a kitchen, a bathroom, a bedroom, and a sitting room—and there’s an additional 218-square-foot loft with the potential to be the coziest reading nook of all time.

You can opt for three larger rooms if you're willing to skip the kitchen and bathroom.Allwood/Amazon

The construction process might not be a great idea for someone who’s never picked up a hammer, but you don’t need an architectural degree to tackle it. Step-by-step instructions and all materials are included, so it’s a little like a high-level IKEA project. According to the Amazon listing, it takes two adults about a week to complete. Since the Nordic wood walls are reinforced with steel rods, the house can withstand winds up to 120 mph, and you can pay an extra $1000 to upgrade from double-glass windows and doors to triple-glass for added fortification.

Sadly, the cool ceiling lamp is not included.Allwood/Amazon

Though everything you need for the shell of the house comes in the kit, you will need to purchase whatever goes inside it: toilet, shower, sink, stove, insulation, and all other furnishings. You can also customize the blueprint to fit your own plans for the space; maybe, for example, you’re going to use the house as a small event venue, and you’d rather have two or three large, airy rooms and no kitchen or bedroom.

Intrigued? Find out more here.

[h/t Simplemost]

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More Than 38,000 Pounds of Ground Beef Has Been Recalled

Beef-ware.
Beef-ware.
Angele J, Pexels

Your lettuce-based summer salads are safe for the moment, but there are other products you should be careful about using these days: Certain brands of hand sanitizer, for example, have been recalled for containing methanol. And as Real Simple reports, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) recently recalled 38,406 pounds of ground beef.

When JBS Food Canada ULC shipped the beef over the border from its plant in Alberta, Canada, it somehow skirted the import reinspection process, so FSIS never verified that it met U.S. food safety standards. In other words, we don’t know if there’s anything wrong with it—and no reports of illness have been tied to it so far—but eating unapproved beef is simply not worth the risk.

The beef entered the country on July 13 as raw, frozen, boneless head meat products, and Balter Meat Company processed it into 80-pound boxes of ground beef. It was sent to holding locations in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina before heading to retailers that may not be specific to those four states. According to a press release, FSIS will post the list of retailers on its website after it confirms them.

In the meantime, it’s up to consumers to toss any ground beef with labels that match those here [PDF]. Keep an eye out for lot codes 2020A and 2030A, establishment number 11126, and use-or-freeze-by dates August 9 and August 10.

[h/t Real Simple]