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This month challenge is Stollen a traditional German fruit cake.  This  recipe is sure a keeper. It just stole my heart... :)  Enjoy Stollen and Wish you all very " Happy Christmas" .


The 2010 December Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Penny of Sweet Sadie’s Baking. She chose to challenge Daring Bakers’ to make Stollen. She adapted a friend’s family recipe and combined it with information from friends, techniques from Peter Reinhart’s book.........and Martha Stewart’s demonstration.

A Stollen is a loaf-shaped cake containing dried fruit, and covered with sugar, powdered sugar or icing sugar. The cake is usually made with chopped candied fruit and/or dried fruit, nuts and spices. Stollen is a traditional German cake, usually eaten during the Christmas season, when called Weihnachtsstollen or Christstollen. A similar cake from the Dutch cuisine is called a Kerststol in Dutch, while in Italian cuisine the panettone also shows a likeness.

Stollen is a bread-like fruitcake made with yeast, water and flour, and usually with zest added to the dough. Candied orange peel and candied citrus peel, raisins and almonds, and different spices such as cardamom and cinnamon are added. Other ingredients, such as milk, sugar, butter, salt, rum, eggs, vanilla, other dried fruits and nuts and marzipan may also be added to the Stollen dough. Except for the fruit added, the dough is quite low in sugar. The finished cake is sprinkled with icing sugar. The traditional weight of a Stollen is around 4.4 pounds (2 kg), but smaller sizes are now available.

Stollen Wreath
Makes one large wreath or two traditional shaped Stollen loaves. Serves 10-12 people.


Water - ¼ cup lukewarm
Active dry yeast - 2 packages
Milk - 1 cup
Unsalted butter (can use salted butter) - 10 tablespoons
All-purpose (plain) flour - 5½ cups  (Measure flour first - then sift- plus extra for dusting)
Sugar - ½ cup
Salt  - ¾ teaspoon (if using salted butter there is no need to alter this salt measurement)
Cinnamon - 1 teaspoon
Eggs, lightly beaten - 3 large
Grated zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange
Vanilla extract - 2 teaspoons
Lemon extract or orange extract - 1 teaspoon
Mixed peel - ¾ cup
Firmly packed raisins - 1 cup
Rum - 3 tablespoons
Cherries (roughly chopped)  - 12 red for the color and the taste. (optional)
Flaked almonds - 1 cup
Melted unsalted butter for coating the wreath
Confectioners’ (icing) (powdered) sugar for dusting wreath

Note: If you don’t want to use alcohol, double the lemon or orange extract or you could use the juice from the zest ed orange.



1. Soak the raisins
2. In a small bowl, soak the raisins in the rum (or in the orange juice from the zest ed orange) and set aside.

To make the dough :

1. Pour ¼ cup warm water into a small bowl, sprinkle with yeast and let stand 5 minutes. Stir to dissolve yeast completely.
2. In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup milk and 10 tablespoons butter over medium - low heat until butter is melted. Let stand until lukewarm, about 5 minutes.
3.Lightly beat eggs in a small bowl and add lemon and vanilla extracts.
4. In a large mixing bowl (4 qt) (4 liters) (or in the bowl of an electric mixer with paddle attachment), stir together the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, orange and lemon zests.
5. Then stir in (or mix on low speed with the paddle attachment) the yeast/water mixture, eggs and the lukewarm milk/butter mixture. This should take about 2 minutes. It should be a soft, but not sticky ball. When the dough comes together, cover the bowl with either plastic or a tea cloth and let rest for 10 minutes.
6. Add in the mixed peel, soaked fruit and almonds and mix with your hands or on low speed to incorporate. Here is where you can add the cherries if you would like. Be delicate with the cherries or all your dough will turn red!
7. Sprinkle flour on the counter, transfer the dough to the counter, and begin kneading (or mixing with the dough hook) to distribute the fruit evenly, adding additional flour if needed. The dough should be soft and satiny, tacky but not sticky. Knead for approximately 8 minutes (6 minutes by machine). The full six minutes of kneading is needed to distribute the dried fruit and other ingredients and to make the dough have a reasonable bread-dough consistency. You can tell when the dough is kneaded enough – a few raisins will start to fall off the dough onto the counter because at the beginning of the kneading process the dough is very sticky and the raisins will be held into the dough but when the dough is done it is tacky which isn't enough to bind the outside raisins onto the dough ball.
8. Lightly oil a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling around to coat it with the oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
9. Put it in the fridge overnight. The dough becomes very firm in the fridge (since the butter goes firm) but it does rise slowly… the raw dough can be kept in the refrigerator up to a week and then baked on the day you want.


Shaping the Dough and Baking the Wreath :
1. Let the dough rest for 2 hours after taking out of the fridge in order to warm slightly.
2. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
3. Preheat oven to moderate 350°F/180°C/gas mark 4 with the oven rack on the middle shelf.
4. Punch dough down, roll into a rectangle about 16 x 24 inches (40 x 61 cms) and ¼ inch (6 mm) thick.
5.Starting with a long side, roll up tightly, forming a long, thin cylinder.
6. Transfer the cylinder roll to the sheet pan. Join the ends together, trying to overlap the layers to make the seam stronger and pinch with your fingers to make it stick, forming a large circle. You can form it around a bowl to keep the shape.
7.Using kitchen scissors, make cuts along outside of circle, in 2-inch (5 cm) intervals, cutting 2/3 of the way through the dough.
8.Twist each segment outward, forming a wreath shape. Mist the dough with spray oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap.
9.Proof for approximately 2 hours at room temperature, or until about 1½ times its original size.
Bake the stollen for 20 minutes, then rotate the pan 180 degrees for even baking and continue to bake for 20 to 30 minutes. The bread will bake to a dark mahogany color, should register 190°F/88°C in the center of the loaf, and should sound hollow when thumped on the bottom.
10.Transfer to a cooling rack and brush the top with melted butter while still hot.
11. Immediately tap a layer of powdered sugar over the top through a sieve or sifter.
12. Wait for 1 minute, then tap another layer over the first.
13. The bread should be coated generously with the powdered sugar.
14. Let cool at least an hour before serving. Coat the stollen in butter and icing sugar three times, since this many coatings helps keeps the stollen fresh - especially if you intend on sending it in the mail as Christmas presents!

Note :

1. When completely cool, store in a plastic bag. Or leave it out uncovered overnight to dry out slightly, German style.
2. The stollen tastes even better in a couple of days and it toasts superbly…. so delicious with butter and a cup of tea….mmmmm
3. You can substitute the raisins with cranberries or other dried fruit. You can substitute the lemon and orange zests for other zests example lime.

Storage : 

The more rum and the more coatings of butter and sugar you use the longer it will store.
The following is for the recipe as written and uses the 45 mls of rum and two coatings of butter and icing sugar
1. Stollen freezes beautifully about 4 months
2. The baked stollen stores well for 2 weeks covered in foil and plastic wrap on the counter at room temperature and
3. One month in the refrigerator well covered with foil and plastic wrap.

Hari Chandana P  – (December 23, 2010 at 2:35 AM)  

Sounds interesting.. perfect and beautiful presentation Pavithra :).. Thanks for the awesome recipe :)

Gayathri Kumar  – (December 23, 2010 at 3:15 AM)  

Stollen looks so nice. Amazing snaps..

suma  – (December 23, 2010 at 3:17 AM)  

Looks really really Christmassy Pavithra! Am sure it tasted as wonderful as it looks! happy Christmas to you!

Priya Suresh  – (December 23, 2010 at 3:31 AM)  

Mindblowing clicks Pavi..Stollen looks fantastic and delicious..Happy xmas wishes to u and ur family..

Nandinis food  – (December 23, 2010 at 4:22 AM)  

The stollen looks very perfect and delicious!

Santosh Bangar  – (December 23, 2010 at 4:57 AM)  

amazing so beautiful presentation cake is wonderful eye catching recie

Shanthi Krishnakumar  – (December 23, 2010 at 5:47 AM)  

It has stolen my heart and always I love the pale lilac colour

Unknown  – (December 23, 2010 at 6:08 AM)  

Hey Pavithra,

Absolutely splendid stollen dear...God...gorgeous pics...You are great in photography and presentation...:)I gotta work on that!!:)


shelley c.  – (December 23, 2010 at 7:40 AM)  

Your stollen looks absolutely fantastic, and your photos are stunningly beautiful. Really amazing job with your stollen and your post! Happy Holidays!!

Ushnish Ghosh  – (December 23, 2010 at 8:12 AM)  

Dear Pavithra
So you have stolen the sotllen LOL...but it is worth it..I will never be able to make it for sure...but you reminded me of Stollen, which I ate in Germany decades is so expensive...
Very nice description and presentation too.
I will be off blog..Merry Christmas and Happy New year to you.

Sanjeeta kk  – (December 23, 2010 at 8:38 AM)  

What lovely pictures and gorgeous stolen. Perfect texture and beautiful deco.

Suja Manoj  – (December 23, 2010 at 8:53 AM)  

Absolutely fantastic,sure must have tasted delicious..stunning clicks,and I love that background color..great job dear

Satrupa  – (December 23, 2010 at 9:51 AM)  

Lovely Cake ...... I am a big fan of cakes n that too ones which have rum ;-) Loved the presentation and your simple description of recipe. Makes baking sound like a cake walk !

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays !


Pushpa  – (December 23, 2010 at 10:06 AM)  

Gorgeous flavorful cake,looks delicious.Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Pam  – (December 23, 2010 at 10:27 AM)  

It looks delicious and festive.

Zita  – (December 23, 2010 at 10:31 AM)  

Wow... fancy and looking super delish :)

Swathi  – (December 23, 2010 at 11:11 AM)  

Delicious Stollen, i love make them.

Priya dharshini  – (December 23, 2010 at 11:34 AM)  

well played with pics....felt like i am baking them..

Indian Cuisine Blogroll  – (December 23, 2010 at 11:37 AM)  

wow..great post..nice clicks...all your posts are something to read about..huh..

Nithya  – (December 23, 2010 at 11:50 AM)  

Fantastic photos anni.. The blue shade makes it even awesome :) Lovely cake too :) Kalakareenga.

What lens did you use???

Unknown  – (December 23, 2010 at 1:28 PM)  

oh loved ur first pic pavitra and all others kudos..and the cake is just awesome, never have heard about them...but very interesting :)booking marking not so good with yeast...but looks promising after seeing urs :)

Anu Nandu  – (December 23, 2010 at 2:25 PM)  

I think I'll be Santa this year - and make your little one believe! That way, when I come to deliver gifts, leave this whole thing by the fireplace. I'll leave a special one for you too.

Unknown  – (December 23, 2010 at 3:12 PM)  

awwwwwwwwwwww... your decorations are sooooo cute, love them. Beautifully done.

Laura  – (December 23, 2010 at 3:45 PM)  

Love the way that you have decorated the stollen. Very nice photo styling!

Suz  – (December 23, 2010 at 5:14 PM)  

Such beautiful, festive photos! Your stollen looks so delicious. Mmmmm!

Koci  – (December 23, 2010 at 6:44 PM)  

What a beautiful stollen! All of your photos look so festive and pretty, too. You've definitely got me into the Christmas spirit! :D

Jeannie  – (December 23, 2010 at 7:43 PM)  

Hi! I love your blog, it's so full of lovely recipes and photos...that stollen looks so gorgeous! Merry Christmas to you and family:D

Unknown  – (December 23, 2010 at 11:12 PM)  

Your stollen is beautiful, and you take amazing pictures!

Kurinji  – (December 24, 2010 at 2:24 AM)  

Wow lovely clicks n happy to follow you dear!!!

Spice  – (December 24, 2010 at 7:14 AM)  

very festive...looks so delicius..

Jamie  – (December 24, 2010 at 8:05 AM)  

So beautiful and truly festive! Your stollen is perfect! Wishing you a very happy holiday!

Home Cooked Oriya Food  – (December 24, 2010 at 8:19 AM)  

looks amazing... very good clicks. perfect for christmas...

MiniBinoy  – (December 24, 2010 at 9:48 AM)  

wow!! can't take my eyes off the clicks!!!looks very tempting!!!

Unknown  – (December 24, 2010 at 11:48 AM)  

Wow!! Same pinch Pavi..i too posted the same today.ur looks perfect & the pics are awesome..:)
Wish u & ur family Merry Christmas!!

JishasKitchen  – (December 24, 2010 at 5:32 PM)  

wow....looks so yummy and very tempting....very attractive pics too..

RedChillies  – (December 24, 2010 at 7:50 PM)  

Beautiful pictures Pavithra. Wishing you and your family merry christmas and Happy New year.

Love2cook Malaysia  – (December 24, 2010 at 8:36 PM)  

Amazing dear!!! Gorgeous pics...Merry Christmas!!! :D

lissie  – (December 25, 2010 at 7:13 AM)  

Stollen looks absolutely delicious! lovely clicks..
Merry Christmas to You and Your Family!

Lael Hazan @educatedpalate  – (December 25, 2010 at 9:40 AM)  

Your beautiful pictures certainly created an appropriate wintery theme to a lovely post. Happy Holidays.

Namitha  – (December 25, 2010 at 11:37 AM)  

Just had some stollen from my friend's place a couple of days back :-) This looks perfect and beautiful..Merry X'mas Pavi..

Deeba PAB  – (December 26, 2010 at 5:07 AM)  

So like Christmas here P. What a wonderful Stollen. happy Holidays!

sweetakery  – (December 26, 2010 at 11:05 AM)  

The stollen looks very perfect and delicious!! beautiful festive photos!.

Priya Srinivasan - I Camp in My Kitchen  – (December 26, 2010 at 1:48 PM)  

This is Definitely a treat to our eyes too!!! Awesome Clicks!!!!!

Padmajha  – (December 26, 2010 at 11:59 PM)  

Oh wat awesome click!!Stollen looks perfect and very yum!Wish I could grab a bite...

Sanyukta Gour(Bayes)  – (December 27, 2010 at 12:11 AM)  

just one word-mindblowing presentation...simply out of this world...

Aparna Balasubramanian  – (December 27, 2010 at 2:40 AM)  

Looks absolutely wonderful. Very festive too.
Seasons greetings and best wishes for a happy new year.

தக்குடு  – (December 27, 2010 at 4:13 AM)  

முத்து மாலை எல்லாம் போடுண்டு கேக் நன்னா இருக்கு!..:)

Renata  – (December 27, 2010 at 5:51 AM)  

Pavithra, your Stollen is GORGEOUS... from the outside crust and decoration to the inside moist and yummy crumb. You did a wonderful job on the challenge! Happy New Year!!

Sunitha  – (December 27, 2010 at 7:42 AM)  

Pretty pictures and a very apt for Christmas. Lovely!

Peggy  – (December 27, 2010 at 8:22 AM)  

Looks like a beautiful wreath! Great job with the challenge!

Cookinva  – (December 27, 2010 at 7:34 PM)  

Your photos are amazing! Stollen that looks liek this cannot be anything but divine!

Namratha  – (December 27, 2010 at 7:37 PM)  

Gorgeous pictures of your stollen and I love that the fruit is so evenly distributed..well done!

Abhilash Pillai  – (December 27, 2010 at 8:46 PM)  

Happy new year Pavithra. Never heard stollen before. Everyday I get to learn new names and things from the blogs. Great!

Anonymous –   – (December 30, 2010 at 12:46 PM)  

What beautiful pictures! Your stollen looks delicious =) I too really enjoyed this challenge!

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