Stollen Bread

Crammed with booze-soaked dried fruit, stuffed with marzipan and dredged in snow-white icing sugar, this Christmas bread makes a worthy addition to any cook's Christmas baking repertoire
Stollen Bread
  • Rating:
  • Serves: Makes 2 loaves
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes plus soaking and proving
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

Main

  • 250 g sultanas and raisins
  • 15 ml dark rum
  • 1 eggs
  • 7 g fast action dried yeast, one sachet
  • 1 tsp caster sugar
  • 260 ml milk, tepid (37°C)
  • 500 g strong bread flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 160 g butter
  • 1 lemons
  • 1/2 orange, zest only
  • 100 g marzipan, ready-roll
  • 1 egg yolks
  • 70 g icing sugar, for dusting

Method

1. Cover the dried fruit in rum and set aside until the fruit has plumped up with liquid, which should take at least half an hour.

2. Whisk together the egg, yeast, sugar and 250ml of the milk and scatter 50g of the sieved flour onto the wet mix. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and rest for 10 minutes.

3. Sift the remaining flour, salt and cinnamon into a large mixing bowl. Rub in 140g of the butter evenly, until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.

4. Make a well with the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid ingredients and the citrus zest. Mix together to make a dough, throw in the rum-soaked dried fruit and pour out onto a work surface. Knead together for 2-3 minutes until smooth, taking care not to over work.

5. Place the mixture into a greased bowl, cover and leave in a warm place until doubled in size (about 1-2 hours).

6. Remove mixture and divide into two equal pieces. Mould into elongated batons and roll out into a rough oval shape. Roll marzipan into a rectangle the length of each baton and a third of the width of the dough. Place the rolled marzipan along the height of the dough shape. Fold one side over the marzipan and seal with the other. Tuck in either end to ensure no marzipan is showing.

7. Make the egg wash by whisking together the egg yolk and the remaining 10ml of milk. Place the two loaves on greased baking sheets, brush with the egg wash and put back into a warm place for a further 1 hour.

8. Preheat oven to 200C/gas 6. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and firm.

9. Melt 20g of butter in a small saucepan. Brush the stolen immediately after removing from the oven with copious amounts of melted butter and dredge heavily with sieved icing sugar.

10. Place on a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Just before serving dust again with more icing sugar.

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