Stollen Wreath is a little bit of a twist to the traditional German stollen, this sweet yeasted dough is just stunning for the holidays! The dough is studded with cranberries, raisins and almond flavor. Powdered sugar and and a sprinkling of almonds on top make it simply beautiful.
It happens every year. It just sneaks up on me. This whole holiday madness. I swear after Halloween every thing else becomes a blur until it’s January 1st. It’s so nice to relax and bake a gorgeous bread like this stollen wreath!!
Originally published December 2, 2014 updated on December 7, 2019.
This sweet holiday bread is so festive and worth the time and effort it takes to make! When it finally gets a little chilly in my part of the world, I love to bake breads on the weekend. I have a list of things I want to bake for the holidays. There are candies and cakes and gift ideas to bake.
But first, I must tackle holiday breads that have caught my eye or have me inspired. A stollen is a German Christmas bread. Keep in mind, this is not a traditional stollen. I found a stollen wreath in the holiday issue of Baking Heaven. I am a sucker for stollens.
I have shared a couple here already: Christmas Stollen
Here are some other holiday bread inspirations:
Holiday Breakfast Wreath (very similar to this bread recipe I’m sharing today)
and my Bundt Panettone (ok, it’s not the traditional panettone…but it was wonderful and fun in a bundt pan!)
How to activate yeast step 1: Warm water
The most important step is to make sure the yeast has not expired! Then add it to warm water that is about 110F. Just sprinkle yeast over the warm water (don’t stir it in). The water should not be hot, just warm. You could test with back of your wrist (like when you’re testing a baby’s bottle of milk…warm and not scalding)or you could use a thermometer.
How to activate yeast step 2: Add a little sugar
The next step is to add a teaspoon of sugar (just use it from the amount that you have put out to make the dough). Give it a little stir. In no time the sugar will begin to activate the yeast and it should start to foam up. It does take a little patience.
How to activate yeast step 3: Give it time
If you have a warmer kitchen, it may begin to activate sooner and could be ready in 5 minutes. It could take a full 15 minutes if you have a chillier kitchen. Take care of some other things for the recipe while you wait for the yeast to activate.
What if my yeast isn’t foaming?
It may happen that by 15 minutes the yeast did not activate and begin to foam. No problem, simply toss it out and start over with new warm water and a fresh packet of yeast. Maybe your water was too hot. Maybe you forgot to check if packet was fresh (I’ve done this a couple times!!). Simply try again.
All of this talk about holiday breads is leading us to our latest #TwelveLoaves bread baking challenge…Holiday Breads!
#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party created by Lora from Savoring Italy and run with the help of Heather of All Roads Lead to the Kitchen.
Our theme is Holiday Breads.
- Apricot Ginger Panettone from A Shaggy Dough Story
- Bacon Fat Spice Loaf from All Roads Lead to the Kitchen
- Cranberry Kringle from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Eggnog Streusel Muffins from From My Sweet Heart
- Fruitcake Quick Bread from Rhubarb and Honey
- Gingerbread from Nik Snacks
- Holiday Fruit and Cheese Bread from Basic N Delicious
- Joululimppu (Finnish Christmas Bread) from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Kardemummakrans from Ma che ti sei MANGIATO
- Raisin and Nut Wreath Bread from A Baker’s House
- Stollen from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Stollen Wreath from Savoring Italy
- Swiss Butter Braid from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Whole Wheat Cranberry and Walnut Bread from NinjaBaker
Make this your weekend baking project. Proof your yeast and get lost in the process. Take time out to make a gorgeous bread to share with friends and family.
Pin it to your BREAD, HOLIDAY, or DESSERT Board to SAVE for later!
Find me on Pinterest for more great recipes! I am always pinning :)!
Vintage Savoring Recipes-This Stollen Wreath is from SI archives, first published in 2014. All part of a series called Vintage Savoring Recipes. I will be showing some TLC to some amazing recipes you may have missed on the blog…all part of my new series called Vintage Savoring Recipes. Most of these recipes will have fresh photos and fresher notes. It’s such a joy for me to revisit a beloved recipe like this holiday bread! Hope you enjoy some delicious blasts from the past!
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 1/2 ounce envelope active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water 100 to 110 degrees
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter melted
- 4 1/2-5 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 Tablespoons butter melted
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup brandy or other liqueur
- 1/4 cup almond pastry filling
- 4 Tablespoons sugar mixed with 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup almond slivers
- Place the dried fruits in a small bowl with the brandy; set aside.
- Heat the milk in a small saucepan over medium heat until it just begins to boil. Remove from heat and let stand until cooled to room temperature.
- Meanwhile, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water in a large bowl.
- Add 1 teaspoon of the sugar and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.
- Beat in the remaining 2 Tablespoons of sugar, eggs and butter. Beat in cooled milk. Gradually add the flour and salt, scraping down side of bowl, until a soft dough forms.
- Turn dough onto a floured work surface and knead the remaining flour into the dough, adding more flour if too sticky. Knead for about 10 minutes until smooth. The dough will be soft.
- Grease a large bowl. Place the dough in the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours-2 hours. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
- Drain the dried fruits from the liqueur; set aside.
- Punch down the dough.
- Dump the dough out onto a floured surface, roll the dough into a 9- by 30-inch rectangle.
- ASSEMBLE WREATH
- Brush dough with 1/2 of melted butter. Spread the almond pastry filling in the middle. Sprinkle on the dried fruits and cinnamon-sugar.
- Brush the borders with water. Tightly roll the dough into log, rolling toward the clean border; pinch the seam to seal.
- Place roll seam-side down on the baking sheet. Cut the log in half lengthwise with a chef’s knife.
- Twist the two halves together, crossing one over the other a few times. Pinch the end together, then tuck both pinched ends under the loaf slightly.
- From the twists into a wreath.
- Cover the wreath loosely with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place until plump, 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Uncover the wreath and brush with melted butter.
- Toss on the almond slivers.
- Bake the bread, rotating the baking sheet halfway through, until golden brown (a thermometer inserted into the middle should register 170 degrees F to 175 degrees F), 30 to 35 minutes.
- If you have any butter left, brush some on the bread hot out of the oven and sprinkle on more cinnamon-sugar mixture.
- Carefully transfer the wreath to a serving plate. Dust with powdered sugar…enjoy!!
After baking wreath, cool completely and wrap it tightly and carefully in foil paper. Store at room temperature then re-heat at 350° for 10-15 minutes.