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Dresden Christmas Stollen

At Christmas, most families prefer the Dresden stollen which is rich and is decorated with colourful candied fruits for the occasion. This stollen tastes best when eaten fresh. However, if well wrapped in aluminium foil, it will keep for 3-4 days and when dry can be sliced and toasted.

Image of Dresden Christmas Stollen
Ingredients

75 g (3 oz) raisins
25 g (1 oz) flaked almonds, toasted
75 g (3 oz) sultanas
25 g (1 oz) glace cherries, halved
50 g (2 oz) candied lemon peel, chopped
Grated rind of 1 lemon
25 ml (1 fl oz) rum or brandy
500 g (1 lb) plain flour
Pinch of salt
25 g (1 oz) dried yeast
teaspoon ground mace or grated nutmeg
50 ml (2 fl oz) lukewarm milk
125 ml (4 fl oz) lukewarm water
25 g (1 oz) sugar
125 g (4 oz) butter, softened
About 40 g (1 oz) butter, melted

To glaze:

4 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons boiling water
To decorate:
Mixed candied fruits
Citrus peel
Glace cherries

Details

Serves: 10


Method

1. Put the fruit, nuts, peel and grated lemon rind in a bowl and pour the rum or brandy over them. Leave to soak, preferably overnight, until the liquor is absorbed.


2. Sift the flour, salt and spice into a warmed mixing bowl. Mix the yeast with the warm milk and water and a teaspoon of the sugar, sprinkle with flour, and leave in a warm place until the crust cracks. Stir the yeast mixture into the flour with the remaining sugar and mix into a dough. Beat in the softened butter. Turn the dough on to a floured board and knead for 10 minutes until smooth and no longer sticky.


3. Cover the dough and leave in a warm place for 30 minutes or until doubled in size. Punch it down, and work in the fruit, one-third at a time. Do this quickly or the dough will discolour. Shape into an oval. Roll out to about 2.5 cm (1 inch) thick. Make a dent lengthways with the rolling pin, slightly off-centre. Fold the narrower side over on to the wide side and press down. Place the stollen on a greased baking sheet, cover, and leave in a warm place to prove for about 20 minutes or until puffy. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 230°C (450°F), Gas Mark 8.


4. Brush the stollen with melted butter and bake in the preheated hot oven for 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to 200°C (400°F), Gas Mark 6 and continue baking for a further 20-30 minutes. A skewer inserted should come out clean when the stollen is cooked.


5. Dissolve the sugar in the water for the glaze. While the stollen is still hot, brush with sugar glaze. When decorating for Christmas, arrange mixed candied fruit on top of the stollen and brush again with the sugar glaze.

Preparation time: 45 minutes, plus rising
Cooking time: 1 hour

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