Stollen with Almond Paste (Marzipan)

Hi peeps, it’s getting closer and closer to Christmas! Oh it’s so exciting I can’t contain myself! 😀

Been to the German christmas market in Birmingham this Monday, ooooh the lovely things they sell! And the schnitzel bun was delicious! I was so, so tempted to take some stollen home with me, but then something in my head went “Ding!” and I decided to take on a stollen challenge.

It might seem daunting to make your own stollen, but after having a look at the recipe, it’s not that unreachable. It’s basically just fruit bread with marzipan in it (well… not entirely true but not far off). And since I discovered the dough cycle in my bread machine, it was actually a bliss to make! Although I started at 8pm and the loaf came out at 12:30 am…. but most of the time you’re just waiting for it to raise. No work at all.


15g fresh yeast or 7g sachert fast-action dried yeast
about 175ml tepid milk
350g (12oz) strong plain white flour
5ml (1 tsp) salt
3.75ml (1/4 tsp) ground mixed spice
50g (2oz) butter
finely grated rind of a lemon
25g (1 oz) caster sugar
50g (2 oz) currants
75g (3 oz) of raisins and sultanas
25g (1 oz) chopped mixed peel
40g (1.5 oz) flaked almonds
1 egg, beaten
melted butter for brushing
175g (6 oz) almond paste
icing sugar for dusting


  1. If using fresh yeast, blend with the milk. (skip this step if using dried yeast)
  2. Sift the flour, salt and spice into a bowl and rub in the butter till it resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the lemon rind, sugar, currants, raisins, mixed peel, almonds and dried yeast if using.
  3. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and add the yeast liquid (if using fresh yeast), or the milk and egg if using dried yeast.
  4. Beat to form a soft dough, adding a little more milk if neccessary.
  5. Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and, with floured hands, knead for 8-10 minutes until the dough is elastic and almost smooth. (Or cheat like me and using the dough cycle of a bread machine). Place in an oiled bowl. Cover with oiled cling film and leave in a warm place (over 20’C) until doubled in size. Should be about 1.5 to 2 hours.
  6. Now if you’re making your own almond paste, you can go ahead and make it (recipe below)! It takes about 5 mins. Or if you bought ready made mazipan, go and have a lie down. 🙂
  7. Using floured hands, knock down the dough, then place on a lightly floured work surface and knead for 1 to 2 minutes only. Roll out the dough to a 25cm (10inch) square. Brush lightly with melted butter. Knead and roll out the almond paste to a strip about 25 x 10 cm (9 x 4 inches) and place down the centre of the dough. Fold the dough over the almond paste so that it just overlaps itself, sealing well.
  8. Pinch the ends together to enclose the almond paste. Place, seam side down, on a buttered baking sheet. Make a few shallow slits across the top with a sharp knife. Cover and leave in a warm place to prove and double in size, this time taking about 30 to 45 minutes.
  9. Bake at 190’C (375’F, gas mark 5) for 40 minutes or until sounding hollow when tapped.
  10. Cool on a wire rack, brush with butter when it’s still warm, sprinkle with caster sugar and then icing sugar. (Butter to keep the caster sugar on, and caster sugar to keep the icing sugar on, otherwise if you just put icing sugar on the loaf, it will slide off)

For the almond paste: *note that this will yield 450g (1 lb) of almond paste!)


225g (8 oz) ground almonds
125g (4 oz) caster sugar
125g (4 oz) icing sugar
1 egg (medium)
5 ml (1 tsp) lemon juice
5 ml (1 tsp) sherry
1-2 drops vanilla essence


  1. Place the ground almonds, caster sugar and icing sugar in a bowl and mix together.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg with the remaining ingredients and add to the dry mixture.
  3. Stir well to mix, pounding gently so the lovely oil can be released from the almonds. Knead with your hands until smooth.

Argh it is so satisfying to have made a stollen, and it’s actually not hard at all! If you haven’t tried making your own, I urge you, you must, must try to make it yourself at least once. I guarantee you it is delicious. 🙂


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