This is the 7th (!!) year I’ve made stollen and it’s the 4th year I’ve made a quadruple batch with my friend, Nancy. We call it the stollen workshop and this year I went over to her place after work on Friday, picked up pizzas and we set out our equipment and did some pre-measuring. Marc and I went back on Saturday afternoon after our morning kickboxing class and the last loaf was out of the oven around 6:30 pm. We watched holiday movies while we waited for the last loaves to cool.
My Oma used to bring foil-wrapped loaves of stollen every Christmas from her home in Canada, but she never wrote down her recipe. Each year my recipe gets tweaked a little bit, but it’s always loaded with rum-soaked dried fruit and plenty of almonds. Some regions of Germany add cardamom to their stollen, but these are the flavors of my Oma’s stollen and Nancy’s mom’s stollen, too. Nancy was even able to track down a copy of her mom’s stollen recipe this year! What a treasure. Her mom used citron and laced her loaves with marzipan, but the rest was pretty close. We opt for a good sprinkle of lemon zest in the batter for subtle citrus flavor.
Happy holidays, friends! I hope it’s a good one! We don’t have any snow, so it’s really REALLY hard to believe it’s Christmas on Friday.
Here’s a step-by-step photo guide to the process. First he dough rises for an hour, gets punched down and rests for another 10 minutes.
The dough gets divided in half and rolled into an 8×14 oval. Then it gets folded in on both sides and rolled with the rolling pin to flatten the layers.
After a 25-35 bake, the loaves are golden and sound hollow when lightly tapped.
The warm loaves are brushed with two coats of melted butter and look their prettiest.
This year we were inspired by Nancy’s mom’s recipe and rolled the warm stollen in superfine sugar. We let them cool completely and then showered each loaf with powdered sugar. The powdered sugar is just what makes the stollen. It highlights the lumpy loaf shape and with each slice cut, you get a shower of powdered sugar.