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German stollen is dense bread that is traditionally oblong, like a swaddled baby. In this version, from Martha's mother, the dough is braided, letting icing pool in the loaf 's crevices.

  • Yield: Makes 2 braided loaves

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2009


  • 5 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour, plus more for surface and more if needed
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mace
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 cup whole milk, warmed
  • 5 ounces (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast (from two 1/4-ounce envelopes), dissolved in 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 7 1/2 ounces golden raisins (1 1/2 cups), soaked in 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 5 ounces dried currants (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons), soaked in 1/4 cup Cognac
  • 5 ounces blanched almonds (1 cup), coarsely chopped
  • 4 ounces diced candied citron (2/3 cup;
  • 2 ounces diced candied orange peel (1/3 cup;
  • 2 ounces diced dried apricots (1/3 cup)
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • Vegetable oil, for bowl
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 5 tablespoons whole milk


  1. Whisk together flour, granulated sugar, salt, mace, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Stir in milk and melted butter. Add dissolved yeast and the eggs. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth.

  2. Drain raisins and currants. Add raisins, currants, almonds, citron, orange peel, apricots, and lemon zest to dough, and continue kneading until incorporated, about 10 minutes. If dough is sticky, knead in more flour.

  3. Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, 1 to 2 hours. Punch down dough, divide into 6 even pieces, and roll each piece into a 15-inch-long log. Braid 3 logs together, and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining 3 logs. Cover with plastic, and let rise until doubled in volume, about 2 hours more.

  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake stollen until golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Beat together confectioners' sugar and milk. Drizzle stollen with icing just before serving.

Cook's Note

Stollen can be stored, wrapped in plastic, at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Reviews (1)

  • JosephPilla 22 Nov, 2014

    THIS WAS AN ALL DAY AFFAIR AND WORTH IT. IT MAKES ALOT ... IT CAME OUT GREAT... I omitted some of the candied fruits I do not like using raisins, currant, apricots and almonds only... My only error if you will was not making 4 evenly sized loafs because I didn't have the equipment... next time I will follow this exactly and use decorated loaf pans to give as gifts... I also didn't have mace for I used more nutmeg and I added some ground anise seeds because I love that flavor...

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