- November 2015
- Makes 2, each serves 8-10
- Hands-on time 1 hour, oven time 50-55 min, plus overnight soaking and proving
Ever made stollen before? Follow this handy guide to learn how to make one of Germany’s national treasures! It’s a lovely Christmas treat, either as a homemade gift or in the build-up to Christmas when visiting relatives or friends.
Created by baker and author Gerhard Jenne.
- 18g (8.7g saturated)
- 35.4g (27.6g sugars)
For the fruit mix
- 100g raisins
- 100g sultanas
- 50g dried cranberries
- 50g mixed peel
- 50g flaked almonds
- Finely grated zest ½ lemon
- 4 tbsp dark rum
For the starter dough
- 175g strong white flour
- 7g sachet fast-action yeast
- 150ml whole milk, at room temperature
For the spice mix
- ¼ tsp ground ginger
- ¾ tsp ground cardamom
- ¾ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1½ tbsp caster sugar
For the main dough
- 175g strong white flour
- 50g caster sugar
- 1 free-range egg yolk
- 40ml milk
- 150g unsalted butter, softened
For the marzipan
- 100g ground almonds
- 100g icing sugar, plus extra to dust
- 2 free-range egg yolks
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
For the coating
- 150g caster sugar
- ½ vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped
- 150g unsalted butter, at room temperature
- Icing sugar to dust
- Put the raisins, sultanas, cranberries, mixed peel, almonds and lemon zest in a mixing bowl. Add the rum, mix well, then cover with cling film and leave to soak overnight at room temperature.
- For the starter dough, combine the flour with the yeast and milk in a large mixing bowl. Bring together with a wooden spoon, but don’t work it too much. Cover with cling film and leave for 1 hour.
- Combine all the ingredients for the spice mix in a small bowl. Set aside.
- To the starter dough, add 1½ tbsp of the spice mix along with the ingredients for the main dough (apart from the butter). Add a pinch of salt, then mix with your hands for about 2 minutes. Add half the butter, then knead in the bowl for a couple of minutes before adding the rest of the butter. Knead until all the butter is mixed in and the dough is beginning to look silky smooth. Cover the bowl with a clean sheet of cling film and set aside to rise for 30 minutes.
- Once the dough has risen, turn it out onto a very lightly floured surface and pummel into a round. Scatter over some of the soaked fruit, fold over the edges of the dough to cover, then knead to distribute the fruit. Continue in this way until you have incorporated all the fruit, making sure it’s evenly distributed through the dough. This is best done by hand as a dough hook may crush the fruit and discolour the dough. Return the dough to the cleaned bowl, cover loosely with cling film and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the marzipan. Put the ground almonds, icing sugar and egg yolks in a bowl. Mix with a spatula, gradually adding the lemon juice, until the marzipan is smooth with a doughy consistency. Divide the marzipan in half, then roll on a work surface dusted lightly with icing sugar into 2 x 20cm lengths. Wrap in cling film.
- Divide the rested dough in half. Form both pieces into rugby ball shapes, then flatten with a rolling pin to about 1cm thick. Unwrap the marzipan, then place one piece, lengthways, down the middle of each piece of dough. Fold one half of the dough over the other, like a pasty, then press the edges together to seal. Line 2 large baking sheets with baking paper, then put a stollen on each. Cover with cling film and leave for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6.
- Remove the cling film, then put the baking sheets in the oven. Reduce the heat to 180°C/160°C fan/gas 4 and bake the stollen for 15 minutes or until they start to brown. Reduce the temperature again to 150°C/ 130°C fan/gas 2 and bake for a further 35-40 minutes. If the stollen turn dark quickly, cover with foil.
- When the stollen are almost ready, make the coating. Mix the caster sugar with the vanilla seeds in a bowl, then sprinkle over a large sheet of baking paper. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over a low heat.
- Remove the stollen from the oven and leave to cool for a few minutes, then remove any fruit that has popped out and burnt (it will taste bitter). Using a pastry brush, coat the stollen all over with butter, then roll in the vanilla sugar. Eat while still warm or see Make Ahead. Dust with a little icing sugar to serve
Make the dough up to the ed of step 5 and keep covered in a large bowl in the fridge overnight until ready to use.
Stollen can be made up to 3 weeks in advance to allow it to mature (it will also be a little drier). Keep in a cold dry place, in a tin/container where it’s covered but can breathe. Or fully bake the stollen and freeze, well wrapped in foil, for up to 1 month.
The spice mix will keep in a sealed container for 3 months. Sprinkle over porridge or a simple biscuit dough.
In some parts of Germany a ready-made poppy seed paste is used as a filling. Some stollen recipes, such as this one, feature a strand of marzipan running through the middle to give richness and extra moisture. Modern interpretations include stollen filled with cranberries, sometimes soaked in rum.
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