Cakes for … Christmas

Scrooge as it may seem, but I’m really not into Christmas right now, given that I have most everything I need and can do without huge meals at a time when I’m trying to get rid of the extra pounds that snuck on while I wasn’t looking this year. So when the spouse tentatively suggested a no-present year, I took him enthusiastically at his word, although I did go out and buy a couple of snazzy storage jars for my non-Christmas present to myself.

But calories or not, I do do Christmas cake, which meant hours of weighing, mixing and baking, followed by several ventures of pouring whisky into the maturing fruit cake to give it something of a kick. That was a repeat venture from a few years back (have I really been doing this blog for three whole years?), although I chose a Rachel Allen recipe rather than a Delia Smith one this time.

[Full disclosure. Delia’s recipe was better. There seemed to be more fruit (maybe because currants are smaller) and less sweetness, and while I loved the idea of a baked, home-made marzipan icing, it’s a little sweet for my taste. Tastes differ. You may prefer the other way around.]

But this year I also tried my luck at a Weihnachtsstollen, the Christmas stollen I remember from my childhood as almost dry, but very buttery, and crowded with nuts and fruit.

I don’t remember ever having a recipe for this one, so used the New York Times as my inspiration, upping the ginger (of course) and reducing the butter just a teeny little bit. It started as a stick-to everything goo and morphed into a sleek, glossy dough, studded with every kind of fruit.

Let’s just say it’s seriously, seriously good.

And for those that are into Christmas, I wish you a happy, peaceful, enjoyable, stressless  Christmas.



  1. Yum, love the sound of Ms Allen’s fruit cake but intrigued by the stollen and its citrusy gingery bent. Wonder if it will be too late to bake one on the 29th post holiday? Happy Christmas and new year, Janet!

  2. It’s never too late to bake a stollen. Call it a rich fruit bread. 🙂

    I have got totally into Stuff With Yeast right now — three loaves of bread in as many weeks. And I wonder why I can’t lose weight.

  3. I really love your blog; I look forward to reading it over the course of the new year, especially if we both end up participating in the cookbook challenge. Cheers!

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