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Easy German Stollen (King Arthur Flour)

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This baking powder version of a classic yeasted holiday favorite (a.k.a. The I-Don't-Have-Time-To-Make-Stollen Stollen) is quick, easy, and absolutely delicious. The recipe combines dried fruits and toasted almonds in a tender, buttery dough, with a blizzard-like coating of confectioners' sugar. Even better it makes two loaves: one to enjoy, one to wrap and give away. Personal Note: Having been lived and been raised by a German mother, I've eaten my share of German Stollen, which is a traditional Christmas treat. I'd describe this recipe as a cross between Italian Biscotti and our fruitcake (minus any trace of liquor). These taste better, even after a few days. I enjoy them with a morning cup of coffee. Make more-- they disappear fast!

Ingredients

cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
½ cup granulated sugar
teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt*
½ cup (8 tablespoons) cold butter
1 cup ricotta cheese, part-skim milk type
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
teaspoons Buttery Sweet Dough Flavor, optional but good
¼ teaspoon lemon oil or ¼ teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia
1 cup dried fruit blend; or ½ cup golden raisins + ½ cup of your favorite dried fruits, chopped to ½" pieces if necessary
cup slivered almonds, toasted and cooled
Reduce the salt to ¼ teaspoon if you use salted butter
NOTE: I added almond paste to the center of each stollen, and it turned out great.

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