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Recipe for Easter Colomba cake with yeast

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Recipe for Easter Colomba cake with yeast



Easter is coming. Last year I made the video recipe for traditional Easter Colomba cake with sourdough

Many readers asked me for a recipe for homemade Easter  Colomba cake with yeast, I did a little research and found this recipe on the blog Kucinare.it, who I want to thank. I added a few flavors, changed the icing and added a couple of technical details which weren’t explained in the pictures. In general, this is a rather articulate recipe, 4 doughs, kneading, shaping, icing… but the result is really worth the effort.

The key to a good home made colomba lies both in leavening times and in the procedure. Having a mixer is quite crucial, particularly for the third and fourth doughs.

As always, it’s best to see the details step by step, so… here’ s the video recipe which explains how to make Colomba at home. Many of you have tried it successfully, click here to see your pictures.

Video recipe for Easter Colomba cake

If you haven’t found the proper mold, you can click here to see how to make your own mold, or you can buy one online.


First dough

  • 40 g Manitoba Flour (w350)

  • 40 g Milk

  • 20 g yeast (or 7 g dry yeast)

Second dough

  • First dough

  • 100 g Manitoba Flour (w350)

  • 130 g Luke warm water(30c)

Third dough

  • Second dough

  • 100 g Manitoba Flour (w350)

  • 20 g Butter

  • 20 g Sugar

Fourth dough

  • 210 g Manitoba Flour (w350))

  • 120 g eggs (about 2)

  • 80 g Butter

  • 150g Candied orange peel (or 75g orange peel and 75g citron peel)

  • 120 g Sugar

  • 5 g Salt


  • 15g Sweet almonds

  • 8 g Apricot kernels 15 (these are similar to bitter almonds)

  • 75 g Caster Sugar

  • 30 g Egg white


  • 15-20 Almonds

  • Coarse sugar

  • Icing sugar

  • One candied cherry


First dough

  • Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk (30-35c)

  • Add 40 g of flour

  • Mix for a few minutes, even just with a spatula

  • Cover and let it rise for 20 minutes in a warm place (for example in your oven, which is off, but with just the light turned on, so the temperature inside will be about 30°)

Second dough

  • Dissolve the fisrt dough into 130g of warm water (30c)

  • Add 100 g of flour

  • Knead by hand or in your mixer for a few minutes

  • Cover and let it rise for 40 minutes

Third dough

  • In your mixer, add 20 g of sugar to the second dough

  • Mix in 100 g of flour, a little at a time

  • When the flour and sugar have been absorbed, slowly mix in 20 g of butter at room temperature in little pieces

  • Knead until the dough is nice and smooth and no longer sticks to the bowl

  • Cover and let it rise for 60 minutes

Fourth dough

  • Add 120g of sugar to the third dough

  • Knead

  • Mix in 210g of flour

  • Mix in the eggs, one at a time

  • Add the salt

  • Add the flavourings

  • Knead until the eggs have been absorbed. Don’t panici f the dough looks like a complete disaster during this procedure. Slowly, it will absorb all the liquid from the eggs.

  • At this point, ass in 80g of butter in small pieces at room temperature

  • Knead until the dough comes off the sides of the bowl and looks nice and smooth and elastic (see video). The dough up until this point should require about 40 minutes)

  • Add the candied citrus peel (150g)

  • Knead for 2-3 minutes on low speed to avoid the peel melting into the dough

  • Cover and let it rise until the dough doubles in size (about 75-120 minutes, depending on the temperature).

Shaping the Colomba

  • Flip the dough onto the worktop and press it down to deflate it

  • Separate the dough into 3 pieces, the first one has to be a little over half the entire dough (that’s the “body” of the dove)

  • Now divide the remaining part into two equal pieces (the wings- see video)

  • Fold the body of the dove onto itself twice, then roll it up as you see in the video (similar method as for baguettes). Differently from the video, try to make the dove’s abdomen larger than the head and the tail parts.

  • Follow the same procedure to make the wings

    • Place everything into a 1 kilo dove mold. If you don’t have one, you can make one yourself as explained in this article

  • Let the dough rise away from drafts.

  • I put mine in the oven, which is off, but with the light turned on and with a small pot of boiling water inside to keep up the moisture and avoid the forming of a cuticle on the dough

  • Let it rise for about 60 minutes (it should almost double in size once again)

How to make the icing

  • Finely chop up the almonds with the sugar until you get a lump free powder.

  • Add the egg white and start whipping the mixture

  • The icing should be quite creamy. If it’s too liquid, add a little sugar

Icing the Colomba

  • Using a round pointed knife, spread the icing on the entire surface of the cake.

  • Be VERY GENTLE to avoid the cake deflating

  • Add some more almonds

  • Sprinkle coarse sugar over the whole surface

  • Sprinkle a good amount of icing sugar to finish

  • Using a pair of scissors, gently cut an incision on the dove’s head

  • Place a candied cherry in the incision (I didn’t have one and used an almond instead)


  • Bake at 160-17°C for 40-50 minutes

  • During the first 20 minutes, open the oven door for a few seconds every 5 minutes to let the steam out.

  • Depending on the type of oven, after 20-25 minutes place a sheet of tin foil over the cake if you see it’s browning up too quickly.

  • Let it cool

Pat yourselves on the shoulder, if you made Easter Colomba cake  correctly you may call yourselves expert bakers!

You’ll impress your friends and relatives, or make them jealous (depending if they really love you or not!)



Vittorio e Angelo sono i creatori e curatori di VivaLaFocaccia.com, il blog con le video ricette semplici per fare il pane in casa. Nato a Genova e cresciuto nel panificio di famiglia, con i suoi video tutorial Vittorio insegna i trucchi del mestiere a tutti gli appassionati e appassionate di arte bianca per fare il pane in casa come quello dei migliori panifici Italiani.

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One Comment Hide Comments

This is the third time, that I’m baking the Colomba. The other years, I learnt it in the italian version, even as I only understand un poco italian. I want to congratulate you to your very interesting home page. Lots of greetings, Patricia

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