Stollen (German Christmas Bread)

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 c. golden raisins
1/2 c. currants
1/2 c. diced citron
1/2 c. chopped candied or glace cherries
2 tbsp. rum or brandy
4 1/2 c. all-purpose flour, plus additional 1/2 c. as needed
2 (1/4 oz.) pkg. active dry yeast (2 scant tbsp.)
1/3 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. milk
4 tbsp. butter, cut up
1 tsp. grated lemon rind
2 eggs
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1/2 c. (2 oz.) slivered blanched almonds
Butter, softened
Powdered sugar

DIRECTIONS:

Combine raisins, currants, citron, cherries and rum in medium bowl and let stand 1 hour.
Stir together 2 cups of the flour, yeast, sugar and salt in large bowl. Heat milk, 1/2 cup water, butter and lemon rind in small saucepan over low heat just until warm (115 to 120 degrees). Add to flour mixture along with eggs and almond extract. Beat at low speed of electric mixer until flour is moistened. Beat at medium speed 3 minutes.

Stir 1/2 cup flour into fruit mixture. Stir fruit mixture, almonds and enough remaining flour into batter to make moderately stiff dough.

Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 to 8 minutes. Shape into ball and place in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in warm place (80 to 85 degrees) until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

Punch dough down, cover and let rest 10 minutes. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and divide in half. Pat or roll each half into 8×14 inch oval and spread lightly with softened butter. Fold dough in half lengthwise, bringing upper half not quite to edge of lower half, and press firmly along edge to secure. Place loaves on lightly greased 15×10 inch baking sheet. Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled in bulk, about 30 minutes.

Uncover. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven until loaves are golden and sound hollow when lightly tapped, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and cool completely. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Choose Fruit – Or – Vegetable -Bread

INGREDIENTS:

1 c. flour
1/3 c. quick – cooking oats
1/2 c. butter
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. finely shredded lemon peel
1 c. finely shredded zucchini, carrots or peeled peaches
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. sugar
2 tbsp. milk
1/2 c. nuts

DIRECTIONS:

Combine flours, oats and soda; set aside. In a large mixer bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar; beat until fluffy, scraping sides of bowl often. Add eggs, milk, vanilla and lemon peel; beat well. Stir in vegetable or fruit. Add flour mixture a third at a time, beating on low speed until combined. Stir in nuts.

Spread batter in a greased 5 1/2 cup ring mold or 8 x 4 x 2 inch loaf pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven 35 to 40 minutes for ring mold or 55 to 60 minutes for loaf pan, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cover with foil the last 10 minutes of baking. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool on wire rack. Wrap and store overnight for easier slicing. Makes 1 loaf, 12 servings.

Nutritional information: 180 cal., 4 g. pro., 14 g. carbo., 12 g. fat, 67 mg. chol., 180 mg. sodium.