December 17, 2014

Christmas Stollen Bites

On the Menu Today~
Christmas Stollen Bites

German Christmas Bread goes by many different names~
Christmas Stollen, Christstollen,
Stollen, Strutzel, Striezel,
Dresden Stollen.

Stollen or Christstollen~
Is traditionally baked during Advent,
a holy season of the Christian Church,
the days of preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Christ.

The Christstollen or Stollen is a formed cake filled
with dried fruits, nuts and covered in powdered sugar.
It is available only during Advent and
Christmas time.
Its shape is said to resemble the
Christ Child wrapped in a blanket.

Dresden is known for its Christkindlmarket and
has the most famous Christmas Stollen.
You can bake your own stollen with little trouble and
in only a few hours time.
Christmas Stollen or Christstollen
is full of nuts, raisins and candied fruit.
Made a few weeks in advance,
allows the flavors to mellow and the fruits to soften.
Read more about Stollen after the recipe.

Stollen Bites

  • 1 cup dark and golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup candied orange peel
  • 1/8 cup candied lemon peel
  • 2 ounces dark rum or brandy
  • 1 envelope yeast
  • 1/2 cup milk, warmed
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • zest from one lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 14 tablespoons sweet, unsalted butter, soften
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teasppon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup whole almonds, blanched, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
Cooking Directions
  1. Soak raisins, candied fruit and almonds in rum overnight; stirring occasionally.
  2. Dissolve yeast in warm milk and add a pinch of sugar. 
  3. Proof for 10 minutes or until bubbles form.
  4. Mix flour, egg, yeast mixture, sugar, vanilla extract, lemon peel and salt with a spoon or a stand mixer using the dough hook for several minutes.
  5. Dough should just come together and not be very smooth yet.
  6. Remove from bowl and set aside while you do the next step.
  7. Cream the butter and 2/3 cup flour with the nutmeg and cardamom until smooth.
  8. Add the yeast dough back to the bowl and work the dough with a dough hook or by hand until the butter and flour mixture are completely incorporated. This should yield a smooth dough. Let dough rest, covered for 30 minutes. Turn the dough out onto lightly floured work surface.
  9. Knead in fruit and chopped almonds. Let rest again for 15 minutes.
  10. Divide the dough into 30 to 40 pieces, rolling each piece into a ball. Place the balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet about 1 inch apart. Cover and let rise 45 minutes or until balls are puffy. Bake stollen bites at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes or until light brown.
  11. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes.
  12. Toss stollen bites in melted butter, then toss bites in confectioners' sugar.
  13. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before wrapping and storing.
  14. Stollen bites keep well for a week at room temperature or you can freeze them for longer storage.

Christmas, German, Stollen,

Adapted from: German Food
Another great recipe for: Stollen

The traditional German Stollen is a colorful collection of
nuts, raisins, currants, candied orange and lemon peel,
along with the traditional spices of the season such as:
cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamon, mace, cloves,
along with brandy, rum and butter, with lots of butter.
Marzipan is sometimes used as a filling.
When additional ingredients are used,
these ingredients determine the type of Stollen the cake becomes.
There are many recipes for Stollen to choose from.
Find the recipe you and your family enjoys and
make it part of your family traditions.
Last year on t2t: German Stollen

Types of Stollen:

Almond-Stollen~ (Mandelstollen)
This type of Stollen which the dough contains 20 grams of almonds for every 100 grams of flour. Sometimes almond-paste is added, however this is not traditional.

This type of Stollen contains at least 40 grams of butter or butter-fat for every 100 grams of flour. It must contain 70 grams of dried fruits and candied orange and lemon peels. Of this 70 grams, 10 grams may be from almonds or marzipan.

Poppyseed-Stollen~ (Mohnstollen)
This type of Stollen contains a minimum of 20 grams of poppyseeds for every 100 grams of flour. Usually this is added as a filling and not simply mixed throughout the dough. Dried fruits and candied orange and lemon peels may or may not be added to the dough.

Nut-Stollen~ (Nuss-Stollen)
This is a  Stollen in which the dough contains a minimum of 20 grams of finely chopped nuts for every 100 grams of flour.

This Stollen contains 40 grams of Quark, or a dried quark product, as well as 20 grams of butter or margarine, for every 100 grams of flour. Dried fruits and candied orange and lemon peels may or may not be added to the dough. 

What is Quark? 
The word quark means "curd"  or "cheese curd". It is a cheese made from pasteurized cow's milk. The milk is curdled through the addition of a bacteria. The curdled milk is stored at 70 F for 24 hours to allow the milk  protein to thicken. Then the liquid (whey) is drained through the use of a mechanical separator. The remaining solid (curd) is quark. 
Depending on the desired fat content and consistency of the final quark, producers then add cream back in. In Germany, quark is available in 10%, 20% and 40% fat levels. 

Quark is basically concentrated milk. It is high in protein, calcium and phosphate. It accounts for half of the total cheese consumption in Germany. It is used extensively in both cooking and baking throughout Germany.  

This is the name for a Stollen in the German state of Thüringen. It is considered a specialty of the city of Efurt. The Schitten is recognizable by the slit length-wise across the top of it. The ingredients of the Schitten include: Flour, yeast, milk, sugar, vanilla sugar, butter and/or lard, candied lemon and orange peels, raisins, chopped and ground almonds, almond extract, Rum or Brandy and powdered sugar for dusting the finished cake.

Dresdner Stollen~
The Dresdner Stollen is the most well know kind of Stollen. For a Stollen to be allowed to carry this name, it  must have been baked in the city of Dresden or in the surrounding area. For every 10 grams of flour, the Dresdner Stollen must contain at least 3 grams of butter or milk fat, 7 grams of dried fruit and candied orange and lemon peels, and 1 gram of almonds. Only those Stollen that meet these requirements can be called "Dresdner Stollen" and carry the official Dresder Stollen seal.

After baking, the Stollen must be stored for at least 3 weeks in a cool, dark place. This gives the dried fruits within the cake a chance to absorb moisture, thereby giving the Stollen a moist texture.

This Stollen contains marzipan, which must account for 5% of the Stollens total weight.

This Stollen contains Persipan, which must account for 5% of the Stollens total weight.

Stollen History~
The history of the Stollen dates back to 1400's in the city of Naumburg in the region of Thuringia (Thüringen). It was created as a Christmas offering for the Bishop. The shape of the Stollen, which has remained the same to this day, is said to resemble the Christ Child wrapped in a blanket.

In the beginning, the Stollen was a light bread made for the Catholic Advent, as part of the fasting rules in preparation for Christmas, forbade the use of butter and milk leaving the early version somewhat tasteless. The Stollen could only be made from oats, flour, water and turnip oil. In 1430, the Bishop went to the Pope to request that the ban on butter be lifted. His request was rejected. In 1491, Pope Innozenz VIII lifted the ban on butter for Stollen.

Several years later, the baker Heinrich Drasdo, in the city of Torgau (in the region of Saxony), decided to modify the pre-Christmas fasting Stollen to a Christmas Stollen by adding several tasty ingredients such as fruits. His Stollen was called "Drasdoer Stollen" and was known in all of Saxony.

The Stollen has evolved over the years, but the Stollen that we know today has really come about in the last century. Today, high quality ingredients, natural flavorings, exotic spices and liqueurs are used. Each baker has his/her own family traditional recipe for baking a delicious Stollen, making Stollen recipes to vary greatly. 
BreadChristmas, StollenGermany
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