Despite the fact that I've never been much of a baker, my wife, Mary, and I would take great joy in making Christmas breads such as stollen as presents for friends and family. That warm feeling we got from baking, wrapping and giving the breads (our recipe follows) hearkens back to before the birth of Jesus; the Romans and the Norsemen, for example, celebrated the harvest and winter solstice with a variety of special foods, including breads.
For the full article, check out the new issue of Wine Spectator, on newsstands December 31, 2003.
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