Der Weihnachtsstollen – German Christmas cake Posted by Sandra Rösner on Dec 18, 2011 in Culture, Food, Traditions
This post is part of my Advent calendar on Facebook where I publish a post every day that shows a particular German Christmas candy or decoration. I realized that I have much more to say about the “Stollen” than just a few words, thus, I decided to dedicate myself to this topic.
The “Stollen” is a German Christmas cake. Hence, it is also called “Weihnachtsstollen” (Christmas stolen/cake) or simply “Christstollen”. Some describe the “Stollen” as a kind of sweet German bread. But I don’t agree with this definition because for me a bread is something that I can slice and on which I can spread butter, soft cheese or put a slice of cheese or cold meat on it and the like. I would neither do this with a slice of “Stollen” because it is first of all, a very sweet pastry and secondly it is of a fairly crumbly consistency, hence, it is virtually impossible to spread anything on it. Moreover, I find the definition of ‘sweet German bread’ misleading since you could mistake a “Stollen” for Rosinenbrot (raisin bread), which are indeed two different baked goods.
All “Stollen” are not created equal, that is, there are different sorts of “Stollen”. The one you see in the picture above is a so-called Marzipanstollen (marzipan stollen cake), which means that it additionally contains a marzipan filling. You can see this filling in the two slices. That are the two spots that look so unbaked and/or raw. Germans use the term Marzipanstollen when they would like to make clear that they do not refer to a Christstollen that does not contain this marzipan filling.
Another sort of “Stollen” is the Mohnstollen (poppy seed stollen). In comparison to the pure “Stollen” and the “Marzipanstollen” it does not contain any raisins but only loads of poppy seeds.
Last but not least, I think it is a matter of taste whether you would like “Stollen”. For example, when I was a child I could not understand why all adults around me got so crazy when they were looking forward to have a slice of “Stollen” because I found it rather disgusting, probably primarily because of the raisins. But meanwhile I really like this cake and I already have had some sliced this year.
Have you ever tried “Stollen” and did you like it or would you go for it?
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