Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Finished Stollen

Stollen before snowy sugar dusting

This took longer than I expected to get into cyber-land. My apologies. I am only now starting my Stollen for the family, so you too have time to sneak in a big batch before Christmas. Don't hesitate to ask me questions about the recipe in the comments section as this is the first writing - I am working through it today and may make a few adjustments to process as I go along. Love to get the feedback so as to make the recipe as workable and easy to follow as possible, especially with these multi-step recipes. I have some candy and boozy raisins/currents kicking around, so I am going to start today.


This recipe is based on the Joy of Cooking recipe. There are some changes, such as making my own candied fruit, adding currants, having a slightly lower butter dough ratio and using marzipan instead of sliced almonds. Give yourself a day and a half to make this bread, soaking the raisins/currents overnight before you start.


1 cup raisins
1 cup currants
Rum or scotch to cover raisins and currents – about 1 cup
½ cup chopped candied fruit
½ cup minced candied lemon or orange zest
16 oz. marzipan (20 oz. if you love marzipan and want a really big strip of it in your bread)

2 tablespoon dried yeast
       1 ½ cups milk
3 cups flour

½ cup sugar
4 eggs
2 tablespoons vanilla
zest of 2 oranges or lemons, minced
2 teaspoons salt
3 cups flour
3/4 cup butter, softened


1.      Soak raisins and currents overnight in the rum and/or scotch
2.      In the morning combine the candied fruit with the soaked dried fruit.
3.      Soften the yeast in the milk in a large bowl. Add flour and mix until you have a dough. Let rise for about an hour and a half, or until doubled in volume.
4.      Combine sugar, eggs and vanilla together, beating well. Stir into the sponge with the zest and salt. Add the flour, stirring together until you get a messy, partially mixed dough. Turn this floury, lumpy dough out onto a clean flat surface and knead until you have a nice smooth dough with a little spring to it – about 8 to 10 minutes. You can do this in a mixer if you have a large one.
5.      Roll or press the dough out into a large rectangular disc on the lightly floured work surface. This doesn’t have to be perfect, it is just allowing us to incorporate the butter into the dough. Spread the soft butter over the dough, roll the dough into a jelly roll, fold it over itself and start kneading again until all the butter is incorporated and you have a smooth, softly springy dough.
6.      Spread the dough out as outlined above in preparation for the boozy fruit. Sprinkle the fruit over the dough, roll and fold again and knead briefly to ensure the fruit is distributed evenly. Place in a buttered bowl and let rise, covered, for 1 ½ hours, or until doubled in size.
7.      Punch the dough down, knead briefly on a lightly floured surface, then place back in the buttered bowl. Place in the fridge overnight (if you are in a rush you can also let the dough sit for a few hours and then continue – you will not have given the dough and fruit time to develop and marry flavours the same way that an extended sit would).
8.      Divide the dough into four pieces (or if you want large loaves, divide into two). Working with one ball of dough at a time, yet again, roll or press the dough into an oval-ish disc on a lightly floured surface. This is in preparation for rolling the dough around the marzipan filling. Let the dough rest while you divide the marzipan into 4 pieces. Roll one of the pieces into a strip the same length as the flattened disc of dough. Place the marzipan just of center of the dough lengthwise, closest to yourself. Fold the dough over the marzipan, leaving a slight lip on the bottom jutting out - see photo below.
9.      Place the dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment. Repeat with the remaining dough. . Let rise for about ½ an hour to 45 minutes. The dough should not double in size. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350.
1  .  Bake the Stollen for 45 minutes for small loaves, about an hour for the large. Remove from the oven and brush with butter (or, if you have reserved the sticky, flavour drenched sugar syrup from the candied fruit – use this!). Sprinkle with powdered sugar until the bread is snowy white. Cool. Sprinkle with more powdered sugar if the top is looking spotty. Eat.

Here is the stollen folded over the marzipan, unrisen
Candied Fruit

 Candied Fruit

1 cup sugar
1 cup honey
1 ½ cups water

orange zest from 4 oranges
2 kiwi, sliced

1.      Combine sugar, honey and water in a heavy bottomed sauce pan, preferably something that can heat and cool quickly. Aluminum clad stainless steel or lined heavy copper works well. Heat slowly over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Once sugar has dissolved, increase the heat between medium to medium-high, to keep the syrup at a steady simmer – not too hot or fierce a boil as the syrup will boil over – and simmer steady for about 8 minutes…until it reaches 235 if you want to use a candy thermometer.
2.      Add the orange zest gradually to prevent cooling the syrup. Cook the zest at the slow simmer for about 20 minutes. Remove zest with a fork, trying to let any extra syrup drip off into the saucepan before setting on to parchment paper to cool.
3.      Keeping the syrup simmering, add kiwi slices gradually, (same reason as mentioned above), and simmer for about 35 minutes. Remove with a fork, trying to let any excess syrup drip off before placing the kiwi on parchment to cool.
4.      Once the zest and kiwi have cooled, let air-dry on a wire rack for a few hours.
5.      To finish the candied fruit, toss the candied orange zest in berry sugar to coat. Repeat with the kiwi. Store in a tin. Use to make Christmas breads and cakes instead of that horrible stuff you buy at the grocery store.
6.      Yeilds about ½ cup chopped candied zest and chopped kiwi (You could easily do twice as much zest with this much sugar syrup if you need more).


Blogger Bloggerboy said...

Yummie. My wife puts marzipan in her Stollen as well. Little known fact: the Stollen ages well, improving in taste as the flavors blend and mature.

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