Heute ist Stollentag! Not a stollen by the Grand Duchess, but a simple, festive looking photograph that seemed like it might tide you over until photos surface here later today.
Today is stollen-baking day at last! I'll post photos of the finished product -- along with a link to a recipe for Dresdner Stollen below -- once everything is finished, and I've even been able to get the Grand Duchess to agree to baking a second one during Christmas week.
In the meantime, however, thanks everyone for the encouraging comments on the blog's new appearance. I think we'll stick with the maroon and gold background for a while then. I like the combination myself, and it's considerably less rattling to the eyes than the gray design from two or three days ago or the Pinterist inspired photo collage that jumps out at you from the screen.
As for my suggested beverage to have with fresh, warm stollen? Well, fresh strong coffee of course! The darker the roast, the better. I'm particularly fond of a French of Italian roast, although right now there are a couple of bags of Starbuck's Christmas Blend -- courtesy of Saint Nicholas' visit on the night of December 5th and the Grand Ducal In-laws, whose lovely Christmas package arrived Friday -- which is nice, dark, and spicy. So, I envision making a pot of that just as the stollen emerges from the oven. It also occurs to me that some hot Glühwein might be just the thing to have with one's stollen, and, of course, if you really want to clog your arteries, eggnog also goes swimmingly with a slice or two of the stuff. ;-)
As far as the Glühwein goes, the Grand Duchess' recipe is a little different that the one described in the link above. She actually simmers orange slices in the wine with the spices rather than using slices of lemon added to the cups after the cooking. And this is, of course, very similar to the Norwegian and Swedish glögg with which I am familiar from my days in, surprise, Norway and Sweden. Heck! Give 'em both a try this Christmas season.
On a toy soldierly note, one of my gifts for the Young Master arrived a couple of days ago, courtesy of The Hobby Bunker. Two Wm. Britains Ltd. miniatures, one of a French musketeer from the French and Indian war loading his musket, and another of an English musketeer firing his musket at the Battle of Yorktown. Long-time visitors to the GD of S blog might recall that Santa Claus/Father Christmas has been bringing a couple of such miniatures to Paul each Christmas since he was born.
These figures have all had something to do with 18th century conflicts in North America, and this year will see his collection increased to a very respectable eight soldiers, who reside on a shelf in his room. Thus far, the Young Master has not shown much interest in the figures, but one day it ill be, I hope, something for him to enjoy looking at wherever life might take him. And, I hope, it might sow the seeds of the wargaming and military history hobby in him. Time will tell I suppose.
Until our own photos of the Grand Ducal Stollen are posted later today, then, here is a recipe for Dresdner Stollen culled from Food.com to keep you busy. Enjoy!