Some of my collegues and I got talking about stollen. It’s a German Christmas cake made with yeast and candied fruit. It is delicious and I thought I might try to make some before Christmas comes. Well yesterday I made some. One of my friends suggested a recipe from “Artisan Bakers Across America” by Maggie Glezer. This a book well worth picking up even if you don’t intend to make stollen.
The stollen is a very soft and low gluten dough. It feremented slowly but surely. Usually recipes use dark raisins but all I could find were golden ones. Oh well, they worked fine. It also has a lot of orange and lemon zest. I think I could use some work on my shaping of the final dough but it went well. The dough is also filled with a line of marzipan down the center. I baked it off last night and after it cooled for a bit, I brushed it with clarified butter, rolled it in vanilla sugar and dusted it with powdered sugar. What’s not to like here?
You’re not supposed to eat it while it is warm…….but when have you know me to do what I am supposed to do. I was still very good warm but a little too moist and soft. This morning I got up early to make coffee and have some of my stollen. Whew! What a flavor! I can taste the yeasty goodness and all the different sugars help to make a great crust on the bread/cake. The line of marzipan that was a little too much last night has mellowed to a smooth almond background flavor.
Another one of my friends told me of a German baker she worked for who would bake it in September and glaze it with apricot glaze. He would then cover it and leave it for Christmas time. The aging worked in the breads favor. I don’t know if I can wait that long. Oh, here comes the family. They are enjoying it quite a bit. I guess I’ll have to bake some more to try the aging process.
Let me know your experience with stollen.