Stollen Christmas cake
Stollen Christmas cakeSubscribe to Sainsbury's magazine
This is inspired by the classic German Christmas bread. Gently spiced and rich, with sweet chunks of marzipan rippled throughout, it’s just perfect with a glass of sherry
- 150g raisins
- 50g currants
- 100g cut mixed peel
- 50g dried cranberries
- zest and juice of 1 orange
- 150ml cloudy apple juice
- 2 tbsp rum
- 150g soft unsalted butter, plus extra to grease
- 150g golden caster sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ¼-½ tsp ground cardamom (seeds removed from 10-20 pods and ground in a mortar and pestle)
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- a generous grating of fresh nutmeg
- 175g plain flour
- 1 ½ tsp baking powder
- 100g ground almonds
- 2 tbsp dried skimmed milk powder
- 1 vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped out
- 3 large eggs
- 150g golden marzipan, cut into 1cm cubes
The cake will keep, well-wrapped and in an airtight container, for up to 1 month. This is already quite a moist cake but you can feed the cake with a tablespoon of rum a couple of times during storage.
In a large food bag or a mixing bowl, combine the raisins, currants, mixed peel, dried cranberries, orange zest and juice, apple juice and the rum. Cover and soak overnight.
Preheat your oven to 160°C, 140°C fan, gas 3. Grease and line the base and sides of a deep 20cm round cake tin.
In a freestanding mixer, or using an electric hand whisk, beat together the butter and sugar until very pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
In a separate bowl mix together your spices along with the plain flour, baking powder, ground almonds, milk powder and a large pinch of salt.
Milk powder is a clever trick which gives the cake the creamy flavour characteristic of stollen, but you can leave it out if you prefer.
Add the vanilla seeds and 1 egg to the creamed mixture, beat thoroughly, making sure you scrape down the sides. Continue adding one egg at a time and beating it in thoroughly before adding the next. If the batter does start to split, beat in a tablespoon of the flour mixture.
Gently fold in the flour mixture, and then add the cubed marzipan, along with all of your soaked fruit.
Spoon the batter into the tin and level the surface. Bake for 1 hour and then cover the top with foil to prevent further browning. Cook for another 30-45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Make sure you are not poking into a gooey marzipan section.
Leave to cool in the tin then turn out and wrap in foil and keep in a cool, dark place until needed.
Make it gluten-free: substitute gluten-free plain flour, adding 1 teaspoon xanthan gum at the same time.
Make it smaller: halve the ingredients (use 90g flour, and 1 ½ eggs) and bake the mixture in a deep 15cm round cake tin. Bake for 45 minutes initially, cover with foil and cook for another 30 minutes or until the cake is ready.