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Celebrate the season with stollen!

Stollen is a bread traditionally served in German households at Christmas time. This year I got adventurous and made stollen using a recipe from Peter Reinhart's excellent book, The Bread Baker's Apprentice. I highly recommend this book for anyone who wants to learn to bake breads or to improve their baking skills.

Note this recipe requires some advance planning. The fruit is soaked in brandy, rum, or schnapps for at least 24 hours prior to preparing the rest of the recipe.

DAY 1: Fruit Blend

  • 1 cup (or 170 grams) golden raisins
  • 1 cup (or 170 grams) candied fruit
  • 1/2 cup (or 113 grams)  brandy, rum, or schnapps
  • 1 tablespoon (or 14 grams) orange or lemon extract

Stir together, cover, and set aside at room temperature overnight. If you wish to give the fruit some extra time to plump up, consider adding a bit more of your liquid of choice.


 

DAY 2: Sponge

  • 1/2 cup (or 113 grams) whole milk
  • 1/2 cup (or 64 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons (or 12.5 grams) instant yeast

To make the sponge, warm the milk to about 100 degrees Fahrenheit (or 38 degrees Centigrade). Remove from the heat and whisk in the flour and yeast to make a paste-like batter. Cover with plastic wrap and ferment for 1 hour, or until the sponge is foamy and ready to collapse when tapped.

Dough Ingredients

  • 2 1/4 cups (or 284 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon (or 14 grams) sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoons (or 5.5 grams) salt
  • 1 teaspoon (or 3 grams) grated orange zest (optional) 
  • 1 teaspoon (or 3 grams) grated lemon zest (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon (or 7 grams) ground cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 5 tablespoons (or 71 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • About 1/4 cup (or 57 grams) water, at room temperature
  • All of the fruit blend from day 1
  • 1/2 cup (or 57 grams) slivered blanched almonds (or marzipan)

Stir together the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then stir in (or mix in on low speed with the mixer's paddle attachment) the sponge, egg, butter, and enough water to form a soft, but not sticky, ball. When the dough comes together, cover the bowl and let the dough rest for 10 minutes.

Add the fruit and mix in with your hands (which is really fun) or for a few seconds on low speed with the paddle attachment to incorporate. 



Sprinkle flour on the counter, transfer the dough to the counter, and knead to distribute the fruit evenly, adding additional flour if needed. The dough should feel soft and satiny, tacky but not sticky. Lightly oil a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling it around to coat it with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and ferment at room temperature for about 45 minutes. The dough will rise a bit but it will not double in size.

Again sprinkle flour lightly on counter and transfer the dough to the counter. For a single loaf, roll the dough out into a 9" x 16" rectangle; if you prefer to make two loaves, roll each half into 7 "x 5" rectangles. Sprinkle slivered almonds or a generous bead of marzipan over the top along with additional fruit if you desire. Roll the dough up into a loaf shape, sealing the crease by pinching the dough with the edge of your hand. Lay the loaf (or loaves) on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Mist the dough lightly with oil, cover with plastic wrap, and proof for 1-2 hours at room temperature, or until the dough has risen to 1 1/2 times its original size.


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Centigrade) with the oven rack on the middle shelf. Bake the stollen for 20 minutes, then rotate the pan 180 degrees for even baking and continue to bake for 20-50 minutes, depending on the size of the loaves. The bread will be a dark mahogany color and should register 190 degrees Fahrenheit (88 degrees Centigrade) in the center. Transfer bread  to  a rack and brush the top with vegetable oil or melted butter while the loaves are still hot. Using a sieve or sifter, immediately tap a layer of powdered sugar over the top of the bread. Wait one minute, then tap a second layer of powdered sugar over the first. Let the loaves cool for at least 1 hour before serving.


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32 comments:

  1. Happy Christmas! Your Stollen sounds and looks wonderful!

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  2. Thanks for sharing the recipe, will try this fruit and nut loaf.

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  3. Your stolen looks so good. I have not seen a recipe for years!!
    Wishing you a Happy Healthy and Prosperous New Year!!

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  4. The stollen looks delicious! Thank you for hosting, wishing the best 2022!

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  5. Thank you very much for this recipe. I'm going to try to do that. I wish you a happy new year

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  6. I've seen it but never tried it, sounds to me like a type of fruit loaf? Do you have it with butter? That would be yum.

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  7. Yummo! Have a wonderful new year celebration and I'll see you mid jan.

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  8. Your stollen looks wonderful!

    Happy 2022, Sue!

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  9. Oh yeah, we have stollen here to every Christmas. It has a long shelf life until Easter.
    They can be very different, with marzipan or friuts...but I miss the yeast in your recipe.
    Greetings from Germany

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    1. There is yeast in the sponge which is prepared the day before making the dough and assembling the stollen. I double-checked the recipe and there was no additional yeast added on the final day. Thanks for checking, though!

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  10. Beautiful stollen. Wishing you Happy New Year 2022.

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  11. That looks delicious. Hope you had a nice Christmas. Thanks for hosting.

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  12. Looks delicious. I hope you had a happy Christmas. Stay safe and thank you for the linkups this year.

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  13. Hope your Holiday Week is a good one. Loved this post! And as always, thanks for hosting this linkup!

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  14. Stollen looks amazing! Wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year...

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  15. It looks delicious and I'm glad you give us the recipe.
    Happy WW and enjoy all the preparations for the fest!

    Happy New Year with health, peace and light!

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  16. That looks and sounds so yummmy. Thanks for giving us the recipe. Hope that you have a Happy New Year

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  17. Thanks for hosting. Happy New Year!

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  18. Wow, that looks really delicious! Thank you, as always, for hosting, Sue! We appreciate you, and send purrs, prayers and all good thoughts for a wonderful 2022!

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  19. This is new for me! I've never heard about Stollen Bread! Looks delicious! 😋😋😋😋

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  20. I took some and it was very good.

    Thank you for hosting the fun.

    Have a fabulous day and rest of the week. ♥

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  21. Oh what a beautiful delicious looking bread. Best wishes for a happy new year!

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  22. That reminds my childhood. All women I knew made their stollen themselves. My mother too. It was a lot of work an the Stollen had to rest one or two months ! Now everybody buys it already made. In Belgium people didn't know but in the last years thanks to Aldi it arrived here too !

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  23. Looks wonderful! Wishing you and yours a very Happy 2022!

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  24. I like stollen, but I prefer to buy it from our neighbourhood patisserie that sells a fantastic version of it!
    Thank you for taking part in the My Sunday Best meme.
    Happy New Year!

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  25. Looks delicious! Happy New Year!
    Amalia
    xo

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  26. I am a novice bread maker so this is quite impressive to me and it looks delicious! Thank you for linking up and I hope to see you back again.

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  27. Hello! I allowed myself to borrow a photo from you. I posted it here https://povestiripescurt.blogspot.com/2022/01/de-la-altii-from-others.html , with the necessary link. Thank you very much!

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