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Friday, December 20, 2013

German Stollen

Stollen is a sweet bread filled with rum soaked candied fruit and nuts.  It is a traditional food in my family.  Every Christmas I bake a special loaf for my parents who swoon when they get it and enjoy it with numerous cups of coffee, teas, and breakfasts.  I use the candied fruit sold as a fruitcake mix when I make mine.  This recipe is a bit time consuming but the result is perfect.

For the fruit:
1 c. candied fruit
3 T. rum or orange juice
Mix these together and allow to soak while making the dough.

For the yeast sponge:
1 T. yeast
2/3 c. warm milk
1/4 c. warm water
1 T. honey
Whisk together and then add in :  1 c. flour.  Allow to sit for 30 minutes.  It will become bubbly.

For the dough:

1/3 c. honey
1 large egg
1/2 c. softened butter
1 T. lemon zest
1 t. salt
1/2 t. mace
1/2 c. chopped nuts
3-4 c. flour

For the filling:
2 T. butter, melted
2 t. cinnamon
3 T. sugar

In a mixer bowl mix fruit, honey, egg, butter, zest, salt , mace, nuts, sponge and 2 c. flour.  Beat at low speed for 2 minutes.  Add remaining flour until dough pulls away from the side of the bowl.  Add enough flour 1/4 c. at a time until the dough pulls away from the bowl.  Knead 4-5 minutes.

Put the dough into a buttered bowl.  Cover and let rise for one hour.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface.  Roll dough out into a 9 x 13 inch oval.  Brush melted butter for filling over the surface of the dough.  Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over butter.  Fold dough in 1/2 lengthwise and carefully place on a parchment covered baking sheet.  Press on the folded side to help the loaf keep its shape.  Cover and let rise 45 minutes.

Bake at 375  for 25 minutes.  When cool sprinkle heavily with powdered sugar.

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