It just wouldn't be Christmas with out a stollen

Some traditions in our family are 7 to 9 generations old, while others are only a year or two. Traditional stollen joyously came into our lives last year, the moment Sydney realized almond paste was rolled into the center, it became an instant favorite. We created it twice last year and for the first time this year. It is a lengthy process, but well worth the effort. The entire house smells like Christmas for days; besides Sydney and I have a merry time together.

Stollen is a sweet yeast bread with rum soaked raisin and candied citrus fruit. It is almost as much fun candying the citrus rinds as it is to bake the bread.

the colors are so brilliant

Traditional Stollen:

Adapted from Peter Reinhart


14 grams/ 4 teaspoons cake yeast

244 grams/ ½ cup whole milk

120 grams/ ½ cup All Purpose Flour


1 cup raisins

1 cup candied fruit

111 grams/½ cup rum

1 Tablespoon Orange Extract


540 grams/4 ½  cups All Purpose Flour

26grams/1 Tablespoon sugar

¾ teaspoon salt

100 grams/2 egg

2-teaspoon ground cinnamon

140- grams/10Tablespoons unsalted butter

118grams/ ½ -cup water

Prepare the cake yeast and warm milk: Poolish.

Allow the polish to rest for 30 minutes

Prepare your mise en place for the sponge.

Keep the milk warm, about 41 degrees C/ 105 degrees F.

 Whisk the milk, yeast, and flour together, wrap with plastic wrap, and rest for at least an hour or till bubbly and fragile looking.

Whisk well

 Prepare your mise en place for the rum raisins.

Add 4 to 5 drops of orange essence

 Pour the rum over the raisins and allow to soak and add the orange essence, while the dough is being prepared.

Prepare the mise en place for the dough.

At this point you can use a standing mixer or prepare by hand; we choose the later

In the bowl of your standing mixer whisk together flour, sugar, salt, zests, and cinnamon.

I found it is easier to whisk the dry ingredients by hand and then use the standing mixer

Turn the mixer on low speed, with the paddle attachment add the sponge.

The sponge should look this active

Add the eggs.

Do not turn the mixer on just yet

Add the butter.

I find it is best to cube the soft butter

Add the water slowly, you only need enough to form a soft, tacky ball.

The dough should clean the sides and bottom of the bowl

Cover with plastic film and rest for ten minutes; after the ten minute rest add raisins and knead on low speed for 4 minutes until the dough is soft, satiny and silky.

We added half of the candied citrus to the dough, remember to drain the raisins well

Place the dough in a well oiled dough bucket or bowl for 45 minutes.

Due to the complexity of this recipe I will finish in tomorrow’s post.


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