Christmas Gugelhupf

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This festive German fruitcake is bursting with warming citrus flavours and boasts a deliciously enriched dough – perfect for the season. Easy to make and great to have on standby for impromptu snacking.

This recipe is taken from Advent: Festive German Bakes to Celebrate the Coming of Christmas by Anja Dunk (Quadrille, £25).

First published in 2021

Anja says: 'A classic, enriched, yeasted dough cake – think of it like the German version of a fruit loaf, just as good sliced and eaten fresh as it is toasted for breakfast.'





  • 20cm Gugelhupf (or Bundt) tin



Put all the dried fruit into a small bowl, pour over the rum and set aside to steep


Put the milk into a small jug or bowl, crumble in the yeast (or sprinkle if using dried) and stir to dissolve

  • 75ml of whole milk, tepid
  • 20g of fresh yeast, or 10g dried yeast

If using a stand mixer, put the flour, salt, sugar, butter, eggs and vanilla extract into the bowl and pour over the yeasted milk. Using the paddle attachment, mix for a couple of minutes until a sticky, dense dough is formed – it will be more like the consistency of cake batter than bread. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and set aside in a warm place to rise for about an hour until the dough has expanded a little


If making the dough by hand, put the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the sugar and butter together until creamy. Add the eggs and beat again; don’t worry if the mixture looks split at this stage. Add the yeasted milk, butter mixture and vanilla extract to the flour. Either using your hands or a wooden spoon, mix everything together until a sticky, dense dough is formed. Cover and set aside to rise


Add the rum-soaked fruit, citrus zests and flakes almonds to the dough and mix them through


Butter the insides of the Gugelhupf (or Bundt) tin and sprinkle with semolina, shaking it around so it coats the entire surface (this acts as a non-stick lining). Spoon the dough into the tin, cover with a tea towel and place in a warm spot for 30-45 minutes to rise for a second time

  • 1 tbsp of fine semolina

Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas mark 6. Bake for 45-55 minutes until the crust is deep brown and a metal skewer comes out clean when inserted into the deepest part of the cake. Check after 30 minutes, as it may need to be covered with foil to prevent it from browning too much on the top


Let cool in the tin for 20 minutes before turning the cake out onto a wire rack – this is really important as it won’t come out clean otherwise. Dust with icing sugar. This will keep for 3 days stored in an airtight container

  • icing sugar, for dusting
First published in 2021

Anja Dunk is a freelance cook, food writer and artist, born in Wales to a German mother and a Welsh father.

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