German Dresden Stollen
Makes 2 loaves:
3/4 cup raisins, rinsed
1/3 cup chopped lemon
2 tablespoons slivered, fresh orange peel
1/4 cup rum
1 package dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1 cup warm milk
2/3 cup butter
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon salt (optional) 2 tablespoons slivered, fresh lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
4 to 4-1/2 cups unbleached white flour
3/4 cup chopped almonds
Place raisins, lemon, and orange peel in a bowl. Add the rum and let soak for 1
hour. Drain and reserve the rum.
Sprinkle the yeast into warm water and let stand until dissolved. In a saucepan,
heat the milk and the butter until the butter melts. Pour into a large mixing
bowl, add the honey, salt, lemon peel, drained rum (reserve fruits), and almond
extract. Cool to lukewarm. Beat in eggs and dissolved yeast mixture. Add enough
flour to make a soft dough. Dredge fruits in flour and add to dough. Add
almonds. Mix well.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth (about 8 to 10
minutes). Place in a greased bowl, turn once to coat the top, cover, and place
in a warm spot to rise until doubled in bulk (45 minutes to 1 hour).
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, divide dough into 2 parts. Roll each
piece into an oval about 3/4 inch thick. Brush with melted butter, cover lightly
with wax paper, and place in a warm spot until doubled in bulk.
Bake at 350 °F. for about 40 minutes.