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    Christmas stollen

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    Christmas stollen

    This traditional Christmas, marzipan-filled fruit loaf can be made ahead or even frozen, making it perfect for getting ahead.

    • Christmas
    • Preparation time: 30 minutes, plus proving
    • Cooking time: 20-25 minutes
    • Total time: 60 minutes, plus 1 1/2 hours proving

    Makes: 12 thick slices


    75g raisins
    75g sultanas
    25g mixed peel
    50g glacé cherries, chopped
    50g blanched almonds, chopped
    Finely grated zest of 2 unwaxed lemons
    10 cardamom pods, crushed and shells removed
    ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
    1 tbsp vanilla extract
    375g strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
    7g sachet dried yeast
    50g caster sugar
    1 medium egg, beaten
    65g unsalted butter, melted
    150ml warm milk, plus 1-2 tbsp, if needed
    oil, for greasing
    200g marzipan
    Icing sugar, for dusting


    1. In a bowl, mix together the raisins, sultanas, mixed peel, cherries, almonds, lemon zest, cardamom seeds, nutmeg and vanilla extract. Cover and leave to stand while making the dough.
    2. Put the flour, yeast and sugar in a mixing bowl. Add the egg, 50g of the melted butter and 150ml milk. Using a round-bladed knife, mix the ingredients to form a dough. If the dough feels dry and crumbly, add a further 1-2 tablespoons of milk.
    3. Turn out on to a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. (Alternatively, you can knead the dough using a free-standing mixer fitted with a dough hook for 5 minutes.) Place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with clingfilm and leave to rise in a warm place for 1-1¼ hours, until the dough has doubled in size.
    4. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface. Gradually knead in the fruit mixture until it is evenly distributed through the dough. (Don’t worry if the dough becomes soft, sticky and slightly messy to handle at this stage.) Cover with a tea towel and leave to rest for 20 minutes.
    5. Preheat the oven to 190°C, gas mark 5. Grease a large baking sheet. Shape the marzipan into a log, 30cm long, and set aside.
    6. Roll out the dough to a 30 x 16cm rectangle. Place the marzipan log on top of the dough, slightly to one side of the centre. Dampen the wider side of the dough with water, then fold it over the marzipan, pressing it down gently on the other side, to secure. Transfer to the baking sheet. Cover with lightly greased clingfilm and leave in a warm place for 30 minutes.
    7. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until risen and pale golden. Remove from the oven and brush with the remaining melted butter. Transfer to a wire cooling rack. Once cool, dust generously with icing sugar and serve i thick slices.

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    Cook's tips

    To save time in Christmas week, you can store the stollen, wrapped in foil, in a cool place for 3-4 days. Stollen also freezes well if you intend to make it more than a few days in advance. Simply wrap in foil before placing in the freezer. Thaw overnight at room temperature and dust with icing sugar before serving.


    Average user rating

    4 stars