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german christmas stollen

In recipe on January 5, 2010 at 2:19 pm

[pronounce it “SHTOE-len”]

now, if i were at all organized or a legitimate, thoughtful food blogger, i would have baked this traditional christmas morning bread weeks before christmas and provided you all with the recipe so you could make it yourself for the day-of.

sorry, bookmark me ’til next year.


because how good does that look?!

we had a version of this bread every christmas i can remember growing up, that we ate while opening presents. i made a few changes this first year i baked it myself, and he and i were both very pleased with the result.

the recipe may look long, but don’t let it dissuade you.

start by mixing 1 1/4 cups (or 1 1/2  cups if you won’t be using nuts later) of mixed, chopped dried fruit – i used apricots, currants, cranberries and dates – with 1/4 cup of booze – i used half bourbon, half cointreau – and letting it sit and stew. oh! i also tossed in some orange peel. if you’re short on time, microwave the mixture for a few seconds.


in a separate bowl, mix 1/4 milk that you scalded (brought just to the edge of a boil) and cooled, with one packet of yeast and 1/2 teaspoon sugar.


let it sit for 10 minutes.

next, add another 1/2 cup of the scalded (and cooled) milk, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, the liquid drained off the dried fruit, 1 teaspoon lemon zest, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract and one cup of flour (i used white wheat).

mix well and let rise in a warm spot (like the oven with the oven light on) for one hour.


during this waiting period, i thought those boozey orange rinds looked appetizing, so i may have tossed them into a glass with bourbon, a little powdered sugar and some not water. unfortunate to let boozey rinds go to waste…


aaannnyyywho… when the first rising is done (doubled in size), add 1 beaten egg, 1 cup flour (white wheat again) and six tablespoons melted butter.


kneed in enough flour to make the dough smooth and elastic.


mix the fruit (and 1/2 cup chopped nuts if you’d like) with two tablespoons of flour.


halve the dough and flatten each half into a rectangle. press half the fruit (nuts) into each rectangle.


fold and flatten and fold and flatten, until the fruit is mixed throughout the dough.


then let it rise a second time in a warm place until it has again doubled in size – 2 to 3 hours.


(it’s good to note here that while you are going for doubled in size, wheat flour – even white wheat – doesn’t rise quite as much as regular white. i was worried the bread would turn out way too heavy or dense, but in fact, it was airy enough and i was pleased with the result.)

next, shape each piece of dough into a 5 by 9 inch rectangle.


brush with a little melted butter and dust with a sugar/cinnamon mix.

roll your dough up to make a cinnamon-sugar swirl inside the loaf and let the loaves rise for one more hour.


you are supposed to brush the top of the dough with melted butter before you bake it, but i skipped that step and actually liked the results better.

bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees.


golden brown!

instead of the traditional powdered sugar topping, i made a glaze for each with a little confectioners sugar, some lemon zest and lemon juice.



use just enough lemon juice to get it to a loose but not too runny consistency.


enjoy! we had ours with hot chocolate and presents.

[mama made one this year, too.]

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  1. i’m lovin’ your site! So, I never knew the correct pronunciation of stollen…oops. Definitely won’t be bookmarking this till next year as I’d like to make it soon!

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