Stollen is a traditional German cake that is eaten around Christmas time.
A few years ago, I was mentioning to some colleagues that I have the idea of backing a Stollen cake at home, one of them talked me out of it, saying it was too complicated, and should be left to the professionals. Back then I took her advice and decided to be content with buying my Stollen for that Christmas.
This year, however; I decided to give it a try, no matter how hard or complicated it sounded, my festive season needed to be complete with a self baked Stollen. Thank my lucky stars, I had some help, because I have to admit, Stollen isn't the easiest cake to make, and in addition, if you are going to spend 4 hours in the Kitchen, then you could use some good company.
We researched the internet for recipes, and picked one, but since my helper was German he had-from many years of trying numerous sorts-an idea of the perfect Stollen. As a result, we ended up making our own version, but with the measures of one of the recipes that we found from chefkoch.de.
Start by soaking 300g of raisins in some rum for about 5-6 hours. Don't use much since you want the raisins to soak all the rum without any liquid left. We used to much and had to get rid of the rest, it wasn't a lot but still nothing should go to waste !
In a big bowl, add 500g of flower. In the middle add one cube of yeast and 100 g of warm milk, mix a little, then cover and leave in a warm place for about an hour until the dough rises. Preheat the oven.
Add to the dough 300 g of butter, 70 g of sugar, some vanilla, and lemon zest.
Use a dough mixer to mix all ingredients together.
Cut 66 g of almonds into small pieces, then add some hot water for 5 minutes to make them softer. Use a sieve to get a rid of all the water.
Some candied orange and lemon peel, we added about 50-60g.
Add the raisins, almonds, and candied orange and lemon to the dough, and start to knead.
Now the dough is ready. For making Stollen we need a special baking form with holes on the bottom. In Germany, of course, this baking form can be found in many shops. Spread the dough in the baking form to about the middle.
From about 200 g of Marzipan make a roll and place it on the Stollen dough.
Place the rest of the dough on top to cover the marzipan. Make sure the dough is levelled
Now be careful and flip the baking form upside down on a backing tray covered with baking paper. Here you can see the holes in the bottom.
Bake on 170ºC for about 60 minutes. Of course baking time is a tricky thing, sometimes it depends on the oven. You need the right amount of heat so it is neither undercooked, nor too dry.
Brush some melted butter into the cake
The fun part starts by sprinkling powdered sugar on the cake until a thick layer is formed, yummy!
The cake has to be kept for a few days before consumed. Traditionally it has to be stored for 2-3 weeks. We waited for one week. We stored it by placing the baking form back to the top, so it presses the sugar into the cake and then covered it with a kitchen towel.
There you have it, the Famous German Weihnachtsstollen :) Hope all have fun baking Christmas specialities with friends a family.
What are some of the specialities from your country? Do you like baking alone or is it better in company?
Labels: German Christmas Stollen recipe, great Christmas Stollen recipe, recipes