Stollen

A festive bread dough swaddling a roll of marzipan.

Richer and spicier versions abound … but this is the one I tried. It “read” simple and clean taste – and sure enough, that’s what we got. Clean and fresh on the palette.

Ingredients

  • For the dough
    • 3 cups strong white flour
    • 1½ tsp yeast
    • ½ cup milk (warmed)
    • ½ cup tepid water
    • 1 egg (or yolks of two)
    • ½ tsp salt
    • zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange
    • 3 tbsp sugar
  • For the fruit and filling
    • 1oz currants
    • 2oz sultanas
    • 2oz raisins
    • 1oz mixed dried peel
    • 1oz blanched almonds, roughly chopped
    • up to 8oz/200g marzipan
    • icing sugar to dust

Method

  1. Add 1 tsp sugar and the dried yeast to the water; leave for 10 minutes to froth.
  2. Mix the dough ingredients together, add the yeast mixture, and bring together to a soft and supple dough. Knead for 10 minutes or so.
  3. Place in an oiled bowl and set aside for an hour to rise; it should double in size.
  4. When the dough is ready, turn it out, knock it back and roll to a large rectangle. Sprinkle on the dried fruit and almonds, and fold the dough over a couple of times so that the fruit is safely wrapped up inside.
  5. Split the dough in half, and roll each to a rectangle – roughly 11 by 7 inches; place a “sausage” of marzipan in the middle of each (Your call – I used about half the marzipan, so my stollen were lighter and not over sweet). Fold over the dough so the marzipan is entirely covered, and make sure the edges are well sealed.
  6. Put on an oiled and floured baking tray, and leave in a warm place to rise to double their size (about an hour).
  7. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6. Bake the loaves for 20-25 minutes, until the stollen are golden and cooked.
  8. When they are ready, remove from the oven and brush generously with melted butter. Dust with sifted icing sugar.
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