Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas traditions, Stollen from my Dad

One of our family's Christmas traditions is making stollen, a Christmas bread, loaded with currants, raisins, lemon and orange zest, almond flavoring, a spot of rum and citron (dried, chopped citrus rinds) as well as yeast, butter, sugar and flour. My Dad made it for years, and we always appreciated being on the receiving end. Well, since he died earlier this Autumn, one of the best ways we can honor him is to carry on with his annual tradition. Both my daughter and I are trying to honor the season and our beloved Dad/Grandpa by making his Stollen recipe.

Oh, my! Now I fully appreciate the love and effort that went into making stollen! (I've made two fairly successful batches, yielding 6 loaves so far, and four have been eaten already!) How I wish I could call Dad up with all my questions, like, "When do you add the quarter cup rum, Dad?"His hand-scrawled recipe doesn't mention exactly when, so I just soak the raisins, currents and citron in it before adding them to the dough. " How do you form the loaves? "I have been folding over the flattened loaf to make his signature, lopsided loaf...

Dad's Stollen recipe

I hope you can decipher his legendary script! I make a butter icing and glaze the loaves with it, and decorate the top with sliced almonds and/or candied cherries. (Dad often used both red and green ones). Good luck!

1 comment:

Becky said...

Your hand written recipe reminds me of my grandmother's homemade bread. She measures in handfuls and lumps of butter the size of a walnut. She baked it in a wood stove until it sounded done when tapped. We loved it. I learned to make bread, but it was never like hers.