Recipe by Kerena
I make this recipe once a year and freeze the loaves, doling it our over the course of the year. It is in the top 2 of my stollen recipes. I choose not to dust with confectioners sugar. I also choose to make the bread in foil loaf pans, it makes approximately 10-12 loaves. It is tradition in our family to have some kind of stollen with our Christmas breakfast. We toast it and slather it in butter...Yum! Martha says "Stollen's richness is similar to that of a brioche, but dried fruit makes it sweeter and gives it a more interesting texture. Serve this rich holiday treat in thin slices as breakfast bread or with afternoon tea. Like fruitcake, stollen improves with age and can be made up to 3 weeks in advance".
- 3 (1/4 ounce) packages active dry yeast
- 1⁄2 cup water (100-110 degrees)
- 11 cups flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3⁄4 cup sugar
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground mace
- 1⁄2 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly ground
- 2 cups milk, warmed
- 1 1⁄4 cups unsalted butter, plus 4 T more, melted, plus more for bowl
- 6 eggs
- 2 1⁄4 cups currants
- 1⁄2 cup cognac (I use brandy)
- 2 1⁄2 cups golden raisins
- 1⁄2 cup orange juice
- orange peel, from 4 oranges, diced
- lemon zest, from 2 lemons
- 1⁄2 lb citron
- 1⁄2 cup dried apricot, chopped
- 2 1⁄2 cups almonds, blanched, chopped
- confectioners' sugar, for dusting
Directions See How It's Made
- In a small bowl, combine yeast and warm water, let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, stir together dry ingredients. Stir in milk and 1 1/4 cups melted butter. Add dissolved yeast and eggs. Turn dough out onto floured surface and knead until fairly smooth.
- In 2 separate bowls, soak currants in the cognac and raisins in the orange juice. Let stand for 10 minutes. (I usually do this before I even start the recipe). (Note - I use a vegetable peeler to get the orange peel as you only want the orange part).
- In a medium bowl mix together currants and raisins with thier soaking liquids, orange peel, lemon zest, citron, apricots and almonds. Work mixture into dough. Continue kneading for about 10 minutes. If dough is sticky, knead in more flour but be careful not to overwork the dough. (Note - I usually have someone help with this part. I have them add the fruit mix and extra flour as I knead. Everytime I have needed extra flour as the soaking liquids make the dough very sticky but they add flavor so don't omit them).
- Place dough in a large buttered bowl ( I use my largest Tupperware bowl to be able to hold the risen dough). Cover bowl with a kitchen towel and let dough rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1-2 hours.
- Punch down dough and cut into quarters (more if you want to make smaller loaves as I do. I eyeball it to determine how many loaves to cut it into). Roll each piece of dough into a 12"x8" rectangle. Brush with melted butter, then fold one long side to the center. Fold other long side over first, overlapping by 1". ( I just roll mine). Turn dough over and taper the ends. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat for remaining loaves. You can put 2 loaves on each baking sheet. Cover loaves with plastic wrap; let rise again in a warm place 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
- Heat oven to 350 degrees with 2 racks centered. Bake stollen until golden brown, about 35 minutes, rotating the sheets between the racks halfway through baking. Cool on wire racks; dust with confectioners sugar and serve.