Thursday, December 10, 2009

Stollen Fest 2009

So for all stollen fans, including myself, Dresden is the stollen mecca of the world!

I have sampled some, just to make sure it is worthy and I can tell you it is the real deal. The original stollen is awesome and always available to you in Dresden, around Chirstmas, within a 100 meter radius (must be a law). Many kinds and brands here; check out this link for more about stollen (see the history section on this web page for the links to Dresden):

So on the second week of Advent in Dresden is Stollen fest. I didn’t know this but heard the parade out the window and rushed outside to see what was going on. It was Stollenfest 2009:

So you ask, Keith what is it with the stollen? Isn’t this just fruit bread of another name? Naiveté, if you think this you have not really tasted Stollen. Stollen was the traditional bread, that my mom made, that was passed down from generations and can be traced back to Germany. For some reason your moms was better than her moms and so on. I was a bit worried how the original Dresdener stollen would taste because of this, but no worries, it is prima.

When I was a kid my mom would make stollen before Christmas. She would make like 20 loaves and one big one. This one, a little less than twice as big as the others, was for Christmas morning. I can remember the smell of it as it was rising for a day or two as it was made, then on Christmas, again the smell. One of my good childhood memories of Christmas morning was the smell and eating that one special stollen. The Christmas one actually tasted almost twice as good as the others.

Our tradition was after opening presents, my mom would heat the Christmas stollen, put a fresh frosting on top and we would all enjoy it. It tasted like it was freshly baked. We would eat the other ones, the ones that weren’t betrothed to other families, throughout the rest of the year. Sometimes with a little help from the microwave, but they never matched the Christmas day stollen.

Well here are some pictures from the festival that honors this perennial favorite of mine:

Lots of speeches before the unvailing of the big one, behind the curtain. The chief chef making a well deserved speech.
The unvailing.......

The big stollen, yes that white thing, for you non believers, is a record size stollen:
Augustus the brave, Dresdens favorite past king presiding over the festivities:

The parade:

Stollen on the move, on its way to the Striezel Markt fur essen:

Team of chefs with banners:

Flags and Band on Augustus Strasse:
Another band:

Of course special stollen flour is needed, only the best:

Dir Raucherman float, last but not least:

One of the many, many shops full of different types of stollen:

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