Alsace Christmas Eve Loaf

by Veronica

Especially for our lovely Margie! Margie requested a recipe that I mentioned for an Alsace Christmas Eve loaf. It is a lovely loaf and is traditionally eaten on Christmas Eve.

This is a short article as I thought it would be the easiest way to get to this to Margie and anyone else.

Despite this being a sweet bread, my wonderful family of happy eaters, The Beswicks, will happily eat this with sweet or savoury things on Christmas Eve,. It is a traditional food eaten on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning In Alsace, France. It should be eaten in thin slices but we pull pieces off at the hot-buffet table and eat it. My nephews and sons will dip huge chunks of it in to casserole sauce or gravy.

This is also called " berawecka " in Alsace. This area of France has a German influence.

Alsace, France

Christmas time
Christmas time

Alsace Christmas loaf

What you need

What to use.

Fruit mixture

A total of one and a half pounds of dried fruit - in fact, any combination you like , whatever your family prefers. I use dried cranberries, apricots, sultanas, dried pineapple.

10 fl ozs of liquid of your choice. I use orange juice. Some people use alcolhol such as brandy.

Pinch of cinnamon

3 tablespoons of bread flour.


Bread dough ingredients

2tbsp of milk

1 large egg

1 tbsp soft butter

1 tbsp. of bread flour

1 tsp of yeast

the liquid ingredients for this loaf
the liquid ingredients for this loaf


The evening before you make it,  put the dried fruit  in a bowl  and soak the fruit of choice in the liquid. overnight. Keep stirring it during the evening so it swells out.

The next day

I make my dough in a bread maker as my hands are very very bad for kneading. If you can knead then make a brioche dough with the ingredients.

I make the brioche dough and drain the fruit very well. Stir in the flour and cinnamon to soak up any excess liquid.

  • Butter your tin of choice. I use a round bundt tin about 6 inch round but rectangular tins are more traditional to Alsace.
  • Add the dough ingredients to your bread maker and make dough
  • Remove the dough and  knock the dough down on a floured bread board. Let it rest.
  • Mix the dried fruit mixture into the bread dough. Fold it in. There is very little dough in this ; it is mainly soaked fruit. The dough will tear. This is what should happen. Put the dough with fruit folded in,  into your tin.
  • Leave in a warm place to rise for 40 mins.
  • It will not rise much more.
  • Put it in the oven for 40 mins  on Elec 190C  375 F or gas 5
  • Serve cold with sweet or savoury foods.


I adapted this loaf from The Complete Bread Machine recipe book.



I hope you try this. It is a lovely recipe and I like to think I am joining other people around the world in their traditions at Christmas time.

May the joys and peace of the Nativity be with you.

V   Nov 2017

Updated: 11/05/2017, Veronica
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Veronica on 06/14/2018

Our immediate ancestry ( 4 generations ) is mainly Irish and then English. My husband is 58 % Western European but I am only 4% Western European.
The recipe is entirely because I do like dried fruits and wanted to make a fuss of my family with something special.

frankbeswick on 06/14/2018

We have no ancestors from Alsace.We derive entirely from Britain and Ireland.

The mackerel pate is eaten on toast as part of breakfast or occasionally lunch.

Veronica on 06/14/2018

I found the berawecka recipe when I was looking for Christmas foods for my wonderful extended family on Christmas Eve. It is absolutely delicious and all of it goes.

I make smoked mackerel pate especially for my lovely Frank, ( happy birthday Frank ) sausage plait for my nephews and nieces, apple strudel for my niece, and lots more foods adorn the table . They all tuck in ...all the Beswicks .

Christmas Eve is my most favourite day of the entire year. I dash around in a big apron making sure everyone has lots to eat and I make a large fruit punch , non alcoholic in a punch bowl and also some mulled wine which sits gently heating on the stove.

We are a large, loud, loving. loyal, supportive family of happy eaters. And I love them to bits.

DerdriuMarriner on 06/13/2018

Veronica, Thank you for the delicious Christmas Eve recipe. Is the berawecka a family recipe because of ancestors from Alsace? What would you serve to drink?

Veronica on 11/08/2017

MBC Ty. and well done you too. You say you are " always open to new recipes " I am too. It makes us more culturally aware and broadens our horizons.

MBC on 11/08/2017

Sounds yummy - always open to new recipes! Well done

Veronica on 11/06/2017

TY Kimbesa
I think that people are the same wherever we go . They have love in their hearts and like to celebrate with what they have , creative and loving.

It's governments who cause strife not people.

kimbesa on 11/06/2017

It sounds wonderful! I like to make bread with dried fruit at this time of year...thanks!

Veronica on 11/05/2017

Yes in nutshell
Soak your fruit of choce overnight in liquid of choice
Next morning make brioche dough drain fruit and fold it in
Your family and friends will love it ; ours do

Sharing around the world is a beautiful thing to do and is the way to a peaceful society. Eating this on Christmas Eve helps us share our people's traditions and cultures.

Guest on 11/05/2017

OMG Veronica you wrote a article for me, thanks you so much, I will be trying this. You make Brioche dough then add the soaked fruit. Bless your heart you are such a sweet lady, thanks again for sharing this recipe!

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