DresdenĀ Stollen

December 10, 2013


Author Notes: I don't know how I wound up as the one who inherited stollen making from my great-grandmother--it seems to have skipped a couple of generations--but that's what happened.

I've tweaked the original recipe a bit; lemon zest is traditional but I prefer orange, and I like golden raisins better than dark ones, so they're what I use. Nothing wrong with adding a bit of your own tradition, I think.

Note that while you can make this by hand, a stand mixer is strongly recommended unless you have the arms of Hercules. And while regular instant yeast works in this recipe, SAF Gold, or another yeast that's formulated for high-sugar doughs, makes a huge (and positive) difference both in rising time and the texture of the finished product. You can buy it online.
You can also divide this recipe to make 4 smaller loaves of 1 1/2 lbs each, which is a nice size for gifting. In this case, start checking them for doneness at 45 minutes to an hour.
gorboduc

Makes: 3 2 lb loaves
Prep time: 4 hrs
Cook time: 1 hrs 30 min

Ingredients

For the Bread

  • 3/4 pound golden raisins
  • 1 cup diced candied orange peel
  • 1 cup diced candied citron
  • 8 ounces slivered almonds
  • 3 tablespoons dark rum
  • 3/4 pound unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups milk, warmed to roughly body temp
  • 2 tablespoons SAF Gold yeast, or 2 tbsp + 2 tsp instant yeast
  • 5 1/2 - 6 cups All Purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

Sugar Coating

  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 pound butter

Directions

  1. In a medium sized bowl, combine the raisins, candied fruit, almonds, and rum. Toss to combine and set aside, covered, for at least 12 hrs.
  2. Add the yeast, milk, butter, sugar, cardamom, nutmeg, grated orange zest, and 2 1/2 cups of flour to the bowl of a stand mixer that's fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat until everything comes together in a smooth batter--2-3 minutes. Turn off the mixer, cover the bowl loosely with a towel, and let stand for 10 minutes.
  3. After 10 minutes is up, switch the paddle attachment to the dough hook, add the salt and enough additional flour to make a soft dough. Knead for 8-10 minutes on a low speed, until the dough is satiny smooth, elastic, and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, adding more flour by the tbsp as needed.
  4. Place dough in a large greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm draft-free place until doubled--90 minutes or so if you're using the SAF Gold yeast, 2 - 3 hrs otherwise.
  5. Punch down the dough. At this point, you can go either of two ways--the easy, fast way that results in some burned fruit/nuts poking out of the stollen's crust, which you'll want to remove before coating with the sugar topping--or the slightly fiddly way of preventing burned fruit and nuts. For the easy way, knead the fruit, nuts, and whatever rum is left in the bowl into the punched-down dough, and shape it into three oval loaves. You can skip the next step.
  6. For the fiddly way, you're going to divide the dough into fruited and plain portions, then cover the fruited dough with the plain. To start, set aside 1/3 of your punched down dough. Add the fruits, nuts, and any remaining rum in the fruit bowl to the remaining 2/3 of the dough and knead to combine. Divide the fruited dough into 3 equal pieces and shape them into ovals. Divide the plain dough into three equal pieces, and roll each one into a thin sheet large enough to completely cover the fruited loaf. Drape the dough sheets over the fruited center, then flip the loaves and cover the bottoms, pinching the seams of the plain dough closed. Flip the loaves right-side up again and firmly shape them into their final oval forms, pressing to make sure that the plain dough is adhered to the fruited dough and you don't have any air pockets between them.
  7. Set the shaped loaves on a parchment lined sheet pan and drape them with plastic or a damp towel to keep them from drying out as they rise. Let them sit in a warm, draft free spot until roughly doubled in size. This should take an hour or so if you used yeast formulated for high sugar dough, or 90 minutes to two hours if you used regular yeast.
  8. When the loaves are nearly risen, preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
  9. Bake the loaves for 1 1/2 - 2 hrs, until golden brown and baked through. Keep an eye on them. If, at the 1 hr mark, They are already well-browned, turn the oven down 25 degrees. Very light gold at that point means the oven temp is probably good as is. You're shooting for an internal temp of 190 degrees. Use an instant-read thermometer to make sure, otherwise it's nearly impossible to know whether the stollen is completely cooked in the center (Don't worry about the holes from taking the loaves' temps--they'll get covered up with sugar coating in a later step.).
  10. Cool the stollen on a rack. As they're cooling, prepare the sugar topping.
  11. Set up your stollen-topping station by lining a large sheet pan with a sheet of parchment and setting a cooling rack inside the sheet pan--this keeps the mess to a minimum. Carefully move the stollen to the topping station.
  12. Mix the brown sugar and confectioner's sugar until thoroughly combined.
  13. Melt the butter, and brush the stollens generously with it. The stollens should still be a bit warm when you do this, but don't do it straight out of the oven--the bread is too delicate and the loaves will break.
  14. Use a sieve to sift the sugars in a generous coating all over the buttered stollen.
  15. Let the stollen cool completely, then wrap tightly for storage. I vacuum seal mine, stopping the sealer just before it sucks all the air out of the storage bag and crushes the bread. They freeze well if carefully wrapped--just let them thaw overnight before you eat them.

More Great Recipes:
Bread|German|Cardamom|Milk/Cream|Nutmeg|Raisin|Rum|Sheet Pan|Winter|Christmas|Breakfast

Reviews (10) Questions (0)

10 Reviews

Rebecca T. December 29, 2017
I have been making stollen for ~13 years, each year switching recipes because it was never quite right. I gave this recipe a shot this year and will never use another one. The texture is perfect, flavors amazing, perfectly perfect! I purchased the SAF yeast and was blown away by the difference, too. If your family traditions include stollen on Christmas morning, look no further. Seriously.
 
Carla December 14, 2017
No, seriously, Gorbodoc? As in Ferrex and Porrex?
 
Author Comment
gorboduc December 15, 2017
The very one. I was a Ren Lit major in a previous life.
 
jenniferp December 13, 2016
Should the butter be melted? And the milk warmed? I melted my butter and warmed the milk and everything worked. It is delicious. Also, I used !/4 cup of butter, instead of 1/4 pound, and still had leftover...
 
Author Comment
gorboduc December 14, 2016
The butter should be room temp, and the milk can be warmed to body temp, but warmed milk isn't critical. But if melted butter works, that's great--faster than letting the butter soften on its own.
 
Melusine December 28, 2015
I picked this stollen recipe because I'm one of the few people on the planet that doesn't like almond paste. The orange zest, I think, gave it an exceptionally nice flavor, and worked well with the rum. The only adjustments I made -- I had a jar of homemade garam masala, so I used that for the spices, and substituted KAF's fruitcake mix for the candied peel and citron. My "I don't really like sweets" BIL was seen nibbling unadorned bits of it while he waited for his plain bagel to toast; my dear friend who grew up in Germany and expected a booze-soaked lead weight slathered orange/honey butter on it and was enchanted; my husband opted for softened cream cheese and was delighted when he discovered there were two more loaves in the freezer. In other words - this was a hit.
 
Midge December 15, 2013
Would love to try this. I don't see a measurement for the milk?
 
Author Comment
gorboduc December 15, 2013
That would help, huh? I just updated the recipe; it's 1 1/2 cups. I generally use whole milk, but you can also use lowfat or skim.
 
Midge December 16, 2013
I ended up using a combo of yours and my mom's recipe. So delicious, thank you!
 
luvcookbooks December 10, 2013
This sounds delicious!!