Winter weather, spending more time indoors plus bulky clothing to hide any excess means you can enjoy holiday desserts a bit more this season, and Metro Detroit has a variety of bakeries, restaurants and specialty stores that offer a wide array of holiday-themed treats to share with family and friends.
One highly recommended holiday dessert is the Stollen bread from Detroit favorite, Avalon Breads. The bakery only makes these dessert breads during November and December, said Bekah Galang, the Retail Operations Director for Avalon.
Stollen is a traditional German bread that has a wealth of nuts, fruits that are either dried or candied along with powdered sugar or icing on top. Avalon makes two types of Stollen: A loaf or mini loaves that are individually wrapped, making them great hostess gifts. Avalon also puts dried fruit and nuts on top of its loaves, making them picture perfect to share on a holiday table.
“Stollen has become iconic for us and I’m not sure why other than it’s just so good,” Galang said, noting that anytime she attends a party with family or with friends, they ask her to bring along a loaf or two or three.
Stollen is the kind of bread that takes at least two days to make, so many people prefer to buy it rather than make it themselves, Galang said. Avalon is glad to help in that regard, knowing that it is an ideal holiday gift or treat for anyone who likes a bit of sweet treat during these colder months.
“Our original is Avalon International Breads, so we’ve done a lot of international recipes, such as Rustic Italian or a French table loaf. We landed on Stollen (as a regular menu item) for almost 20 years now. And I’d like to think we’ve gotten better and better at it,” Galang said.
Making stollen is a “long and involved process,” Galang said, usually taking about 24 to 48 hours. The first day, bakers start by soaking dried fruits such as cherries, cranberries and raisins as well as big chunks of orange and lemon peel in brandy. A lot of brand, Galang noted. These ingredients soak overnight to pull as much liquid into them as possible.
Avalon also uses organic flour in its Stollen, which created a “gooey, rich dough” for the bread, Galang said. After it is kneaded and more, the Stollen is baked, topped with icing and other decorative items like the more dried fruit and nuts. The resulting bread is so moist it typically can be enjoyed for up to 10 days, Galang said.
If you’re feeling hungry for more, here are some other Metro Detroit locations that specialize in festive and beautiful holiday desserts.
Everyone loves a big plate of cookies during the holidays. Offering a wide variety of flavors will please any crowd and make sure they stay jolly. New Palace makes everything tasty in the baked-goods world, but if you bring home some Snowball pastries, you can be sure that you’ll have a good holiday.
What could be lovelier to serve than a variety of baklava and honey-sweetened treats? Le Monde makes some of the finest phyllo-centric pastries in Metro Detroit. You can order smaller trays or large party-size goods from this bakery, which provides a great selection of international goodies fit for any group or activity.
You know it is the holiday if you’re covered with powdered sugar by the end of the dessert course. No other dessert but Angel Wings offer the mix of light-as-air pastry with tons of the white sugar that signals the holiday is here. You can get a small box or the big party-size tray of these sinfully good desserts.
Nothing says the holidays like a casserole – but how can you extend that into dessert? Look no further than Detroit Cookie. They carry every kind of creative cookie you can imagine, including what it calls the Sweet Potato Casserole. This cookie features Sweet Potato Casserole with Toasted Pecans and Marshmallows Swirled into its original dough.