This month’s challenge from the Daring Kitchen was German Christmas Stollen. It was hosted by Penny from Sweet Sadie’s Baking! I was excited soon as I saw the challenge because being of German heritage, I had never made this before. I also decided to take it with us to a friend’s house for Christmas Eve dinner (even though it was all Puerto Rican food!

Stollen is a traditional bread made around Christmastime in Germany. The inside has candied fruits, nuts and spices and the outside is generously coated with butter and powdered sugar. It’s something like a fruitcake, but so much more than that – and WAY better without all the hangups about ‘fruitcake’!

Penny supplied us all with the same recipe, links to a Martha Stewart demonstration and an excerpt from Peter Reinhert’s “Bread Baker’s Apprentice.” “Stollen – a very traditional German Christmas bread that tastes fabulous and looks pretty. We are going to create it in the shape of a wreath so it won’t exactly be traditional, as the shape of the cake was originally meant to represent the baby Jesus wrapped in swaddling clothes. It looks spectacular though!!!”

Substitutions:

  • Instead of a full cup of raisins, I did half raisin, half goji berry.
  • Used half sliced almonds and half chopped pecan.
  • Used orange and Key Lime zest (even though the Key Limes were yellow!)
  • Left out the candied citrus zest and candied cherries.

Here’s some pictures from my Stollen making adventure. It was a really easy and tasty recipe. I can’t wait to make these for friends and family next year. Here’s the link to make it yourself!

Soaking the fruit and mixing the dry ingredients

Kneading the dough in the stand mixer.

The dough goes into a greased bowl overnight, and exits late afternoon the next day. The dough comes to room temperature, about two hours before rolling.

Even though the dough wasn’t sticky I put some flour down to help with rolling. I punched the dough out into a rough rectangle, and began rolling. The finished dough should be 16″ x 24″ and the red silicone mat disappeared. Starting with the long side, roll the dough up!

Once the dough is rolled, pinch the ends together and form a circle or wreath like shape. Then use kitchen shears to cut into the dough about 2/3rds of the way. It’s part decoration and part utilitarian – it helps the bread bake. The dough needs to rise once again (until 1.5x it’s size) before it bakes in the oven.

Once it’s a dark golden brown, sounds hollow when tapped on, it’s finished in the oven! The smell of citrus and cinnamon in the house was absolutely heavenly at this point!

Then begins the application of melted butter and powdered sugar – at least three applications. (Ah yes, I couldn’t believe how much butter I used!!!!!)

Somewhere in the chaos and fun of the evening I forgot to take a picture of the bread sliced. (Puerto Rican food is just too yum!) The bread was absolute perfection inside. I even had someone come up to me ask if there was pineapple in it, because she was convinced there was pineapple in it – but she was allergic to it. I happily told her there was none, so she went back for some more even though it was on her list of foods not to eat on her diet!

I loved taking pictures of the Stollen!


thesugarpixieUncategorizedBaking,bread,citrus,daring bakers,german,holiday,holidays 2010This month's challenge from the Daring Kitchen was German Christmas Stollen. It was hosted by Penny from Sweet Sadie's Baking! I was excited soon as I saw the challenge because being of German heritage, I had never made this before. I also decided to take it with us to...Misadventures and fun in the kitchen and beyond