The best thing about Christmas, for me anyway, is the wonderful smell of sweet spices that waft around as I bake my festive biscuits, cakes and other treats.
Today, I wanted to share with you my recipe mix for Christmas stollen, which can be not only used in the traditional Stollen recipe, but also in any festive cake baking.
It’s lovely and warming with just a hint of lemon, which is fantastic even as topping for a Christmas morning porridge.
Why make this recipe?
- Authentic Christmas Stollen spice mix based on the traditional recipe
- Put the spice into a pretty jam jar with fabric decorations, ribbon and a personalised label and you have a lovely Christmas gift for your foodie friends
- Use it for baking stollen cake and other cake and biscuit recipes that call for festive sweet spice
- Great to use to spice up your breakfast porridge, smoothie or bake into granola oats bar
What exactly is Christmas Stollen Spice?
This type of mixed spice was created for traditional german Christmas Stollen cake. It’s traditionally baked at Christmas and it’s a fairly heavy sweet bread full of dried fruit, candied lemon or orange peel and warming spice.
It usually has a log of marzipan running through the middle, although there are some recipes that use the marzipan in the dough mix. It’s usually eaten on a Christmas day, but these days, people treat themselves to this cake through the whole festive season.
You will need all your spices and lemon peel finely grounded before you start mixing everything together. You can use something like a coffee grinder to finely ground them, but to be honest I find that it’s easier to buy the ground variety.
I’ve recently seen dried and finely grounded lemon peel in my local supermarket, which inspired me to make this spice mix.
If you can’t get hold of prepared lemon peel, just separate the yellow peel from the lemons and let the peel to dry. You can also use a fine grater to zest the lemon and leave it to dry.
Once dried, finely ground the peel and let it to dry until completely done. Please don’t use candied lemon peel as this will make the spice moist and sticky and you won’t be able to keep them for a longer period of time.
Cardamon is also used for making sweet bread, brioche or cardamon buns. It’s usually available as a cardamom pod, so you might need to grind the cardamom seeds first.
Cinnamon is the easiest spice to get hold off in this recipe, just make sure that is finely ground.
Nutmeg is perfect for using in savoury dishes too, in particular Au gratin potatoes, so you’ll always have a use for it, if you need to buy it in. You can buy whole nutmegs, but if you do, you need to grate them on a very fine grater as they are difficult to ground. If you can get ground version, it’s much better.
Mace can be replaced with all spice as they have a very similar taste.
Cloves is quite a strong flavoured spice, so don’t add more than the recipe calls for. Cloves can have a slightly bitter taste.
Again, make sure that you use the ground and dried version of ginger. If you end up using fresh ginger, finely grate it first and leave it to dry. Finely ground it and leave it out to dry completely before adding it to your spice mix.
Perhaps unusual choice for a sweet spice mix, but coriander will add a hint of earthiness and depth to the recipe.
I had to go online to find ground aniseed, but since I got a larger bag I seems to be using it in just about everything. Aniseed tastes like liquorice (which is how liquorice is made), so it can be used in any sweet baking recipe. It’s quite strong, so be careful if you are using it instead of other spices.
How to make the Christmas Stollen Spice Mix Recipe
Make sure that all your spices are ground first. If not, ground them as finely as you can and use a fine sieve to get rid of any large particles.
If you don’t have a particular spice, leave it out. This way you can create your own Christmas spice and use it in your baking.
Dry lemon peel or buy it prepared. Finely ground it and leave it to dry for a little bit longer on a warm radiator or somewhere warm (but not hot).
Measure everything up with proper measuring spoons. You want to make sure that you add your spices to the level of the teaspoons (not heaped).
Mix everything together in a jar, label and use up within 6 months.
What to do if you don’t have all the ingredients
First of all gather whatever spice you already have at home. If you have the whole version of the spice, finely ground it or grate it as well as you can.
You can use a coffee grinder, fine grater, food processor or even a pester and mortar.
The flavour of the spice recipe will be more complex the more spices you add. The most important ingredient, apart from the spices is the lemon peel, so try to make sure you include that one.
How to use this spice mix
Pretty much any recipe that uses cinnamon or all spice, can be used with the same amount of the Christmas Stollen Mix spice. The result will be much milder flavour, but more complex at the same time.
- Christmas Stollen Cake
- Breakfast porridge
- Loaf cakes
How to store spice mix
Once mixed, store in an airtight container, such as jam jar or a plastic box.
Your spice won’t go off as such, but if you’ve used your own lemon peel, the chances are that there could be a tiny amount of moisture left, which can cause mould if stored for too long.
I’d suggest to make this recipe quantity and use it up during one season 1-2 months maximum.
Christmas Stollen Spice Mix
- 2 teaspoons lemon peel dried & ground
- 1 teaspoon cardamom
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon mace (or all spice)
- 1/2 teaspoon cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon corriander
- 1/4 teaspoon aniseed
- Make sure that all your spices are ground first. If not, ground them as finelly as you can and use a fine sieve to get rid of any large particles.
- If you don't have a particular spice, leave it out. This way you can create your own Christmas spice and use it in your baking.
- Dry lemon peel or buy it prepared. Finelly ground it and leave to dry for a little bit longer on a warm radiator or somewhere warm (but not hot).
- Measure everything up with a proper measuring spoons. You want to make sure that you add your spices to the level of the teaspoons (not heaped).
- Mix everything together in a jar, label and use up within 6 months.