Stollen is a German sweet bread made with dried fruit and almonds. This is something I’ve traditionally prepared for the Christmas holidays since about 1968 (Yikes! that’s a very long time!).
The recipe calls for a drizzle of confectionary icing, but for several years I’ve omitted that extra touch of sweet. The bread is really sweet enough on its own.
5½ to 6½ c. flour
½ c. sugar
1¼ tsp. salt
¼ c. water
¾ c. milk
2/3 c. butter
3 eggs (at room temperature)
2 pkg. dry yeast
¾ c. mixed candied fruits
¾ c. blanched almonds
1/3 c. raisins
Confectioner’s sugar frosting
In a large bowl mix 2 c. flour, sugar, salt, and un-dissolved yeast.
Combine milk, water, and butter and heat until liquid is warm (butter does not need to melt). Gradually add to dry ingredients and beat well.
Add eggs and ½ c. flour to make a thick batter. Beat well.
Stir in enough additional flour to make a soft dough. Turn out onto lightly floured board; knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover; let rise in warm place, free from draft, until doubled in bulk, about 1½ hours.
Combine candied fruits, almonds, and raisins.
Punch dough down; turn out onto lightly floured board. Knead in fruit and nut mixture. Divide in 3 equal pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a 12×7 inch oval. Fold in half lengthwise. Place on greased baking sheets. Cover; let rise in warm place, free from draft, until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.
Bake in moderate over (about 350° F) about 20 to 25 minutes.
Frost with confectioners’ sugar frosting while warm and decorate with blanched almonds and candied cherries.