My gosh you guys, if you like giving out baked goods during the holiday season, you need to add these to your list of things to make. Dried fruits are soaked overnight in Brandy to give a wonderful flavor.
Now if you are familiar with the Williams Sonoma catalog you may be thinking why not just buy a Stollen from them directly. Well for one, they are expensive! $35-$55 per loaf is pretty pricey. Secondly, homemade is fresher and you get three loaves instead of one.
Initially I was afraid the bread might come out dry, but it has such a great texture and best of all it has so much flavor. I had a lot of doubts about how this would turn out and I was taken aback at how delicious and perfect it turned out. Enjoy!
Williams Sonoma Dresden Stollen with Cranberries
Makes 3 loaves
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup currants
- 1/3 cup diced citron
- 1/3 cup diced candied orange peel
- 1/4 cup brandy
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 cup milk, warmed
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon almond extract (essence)
- 3/4 cup (4 oz) almonds, toasted, cooled and chopped
- about 5 1/2 cups all-purpose (plain) flour
- 7 oz marzipan
- confectioners’ sugar
1. Combine cranberries, currants, citron, orange peel, and brandy in a small dish; cover and let stand overnight at room temperature.1.
2. Pour the warm water into a large bowl; sprinkle the yeast over the top; let stand until dissolved -- about 1 minute. Stir in the milk, melted butter, granulated sugar and salt. Whisk in the eggs and almond extract; mix in the almonds and fruit mixture. Using a wooden spoon, gradually beat in about 4 1/2 cups flour to make a semisoft dough.
3. Transfer the dough to a floured work surface and knead, adding about 1 cup more flour as needed to prevent sticking, until smooth and elastic -- about 5 minutes. Gather the dough into a ball and place in a bowl greased with butter; turn to coat with the butter and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Place in a warm, draft-free area until the dough is doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
4. Punch down the dough and transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Knead until smooth, about 3 minutes. Divide into 3 equal portions. Roll out each into a round, 3/4 inch thick. Pinch off bits of the marzipan and and arrange evenly on the dough rounds. Roll up each round jelly-roll style. Grease a baking sheet with butter and place the rolls, seam side down, on it. Cover with the towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 45 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, position a rack in the middle of an oven and preheat to 375. Bake until the loaves are golden brown and sound hollow when thumped on the bottom, about 45 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Dust the loaves with confectioners’ sugar. Let cool completely and dust again with the powdered sugar before serving. Serve immediately or wrap airtight and store at cool room temperature for 3 days.
Recipe from Williams-Sonoma Holiday Baking