Dresden Dresdner Stollen® - Quite a long story
Stollen, a bread-like loaf, was first mentioned in a document in the early 14th century. However, it can be assumed that this delicious baked specialty has existed for a great deal longer.
In the Middle Ages, “Striezel”, a loaf made of yeast dough, was a food that was permitted during the fasting period prescribed right before Christmas. But it is doubtful whether the “Striezel” loaves that were baked more than 500 years ago could be described as delicious. The religious dogmas of the Roman Catholic church did not permit much more than water, flour and yeast as ingredients.
However, one of the greatest deficits was that the use of butter was prohibited during the fasting period. Only a tiny amount of oil was allowed. The bread tasted so horrible that the Saxon princes turned to the Pope - for their own sake as well as that of their subjects. They petitioned for the ban on butter to be rescinded for “Striezel” bakers. In the year 1491 Pope Innocent VIII gave his permission to use butter freely in the so-called “Butter Letter”.
In the year 1730, Augustus the Strong had a major festive military event organised. For the festivity called Zeithainer Lustlager, among other things, he had Master Baker Zacharias serve a gigantic stollen loaf weighing 1.8 tons.
In 1994 the 300-year anniversary of the coronation of Augustus the Strong as Elector was celebrated.
Since then, the Stollen Festival has been celebrated every year on the Saturday before the second Sunday of Advent. A gigantic stollen loaf weighing 3.5 tons is hauled through the historic city centre of Dresden during a festive parade, and after that individual servings are sold for a good cause.
That stollen is baked by the roughly 140 bakeries that are members in the Dresden Stollen Protection Association [Schutzverband Dresdner Stollen e.V.] All of the members, including our bakery, have to pass a “stollen examination” every year. Each member is only allowed to sell Dresdner Stollen® (Dresden Stollen) for another year after passing that quality inspection.
To some extent information from the 1st edition of “Dresdner Stollen”