Mike brought home a bunch of apples out of our friends yard and I immediately thought that I have to give Applestrudel a shot. I’ve made it a long time ago and remembered that rolling out the dough super thin is the toughest part but even if its not getting all that thin it still turns out to be a tasty treat and my favorite way serving it is with warm Vanilla Sauce. My apple tree did not produce any apples this year 😦 but thankfully we have friends with apple trees and so I could make Apfelstrudel with home grown apples, but of course store bought apples will work fine, just make sure to buy a variety that keeps it shape when baked/cooked.
Old-fashioned, Vienna/Austrian Apple Strudel is not really hard to make, you just need to give the dough some time to rest and then take your time stretching it The Strudel contains simple ingredients, like apples, raisins, sugar and cinnamon and is encased in a thin sheet of unleavened dough. It smells wonderful and tastes even better, with some vanilla sauce, whipped cream, or even a scoop of ice cream. Don’t be fooled by those recipes using filo pastry dough, it works but its not original 😉
For the Strudel dough
- 1 2/3 cups (250 g) unbleached flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons (125 ml) water, plus more if needed
- oil for coating the dough
- 1 egg yolk
For the Strudel
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) golden rum (or use apple juice)
- 6 tablespoons (100gr) raisins
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2/3rd cup (150gr) sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick / 115 g) unsalted butter, melted, divided
- 3 tablespoons bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup (120 ml, about 60 g) coarsely chopped walnuts – optional
- 4 pounds (2kg – approximately 10 big apples) tart cooking apples, peeled, cored and cut into ¼ inch-thick slices (use apples that hold their shape during baking)
- powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Mix the rum and raisins in a bowl. Mix the cinnamon and sugar in another bowl. Heat 1 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the breadcrumbs and cook whilst stirring until golden and toasted. This will take about 3 minutes. Let it cool completely.
- Mix the apples with the cinnamon sugar and the raisins, let the mixture sit for a little bit and drain before you use the apple mixture. If you like to add walnuts or other nuts mix them into this step.
- Combine the flour and salt in a stand-mixer fitted with the hook attachment. Add the water and egg yolk to the flour with the mixer on low to medium speed and do not knead the dough by hand that will make it brittle instead of elastic. You are going for elasticity, that’s the number one goal so that you can stretch the dough very thin. The dough is ready when a ball forms around the hook and none of the dough is sticking to the bowl. If its too liquid add a little bit flour (one teaspoon a time) and if its too firm, add a little bit of water. Take the dough out of the bowl, form it into a ball, coat it with oil and wrap it with plastic wrap. VERY important, let the dough rest at room temperature. The longer the better, minimum 30 minutes, better would 1-2 hours. That should help make the dough elastic.
- Prepare your working area with a big kitchen towel or cheese cloth and spread flour on it. You will need the towel under the dough so that you can roll up the super thin dough with the towel. Roll out dough as thin as you can. Then pick the dough up by holding it by an edge. This way the weight of the dough and gravity can help stretching it as it hangs. Using the back of your hands to gently stretch and pull the dough. You can try and stretch the thicker sides by pulling them a little bit and if it starts ripping fill in the holes with pieces from the thicker ends. Stretch and pull the dough until you can see the kitchen towel pattern. The dough should have a somewhat rectangle form (2×3 feet) and cut away the thick edges.
- Dab the melted butter on the rolled out dough. Then spread the breadcrumbs on the dough (super thin layer) and add the drained apple cinnamon/raisin mixture.
- Roll up the dough with the towel from the long side of the rectangle (the 3 foot side needs to be rolled up).
- Leave the roll on the towel and roll it onto a greased baking sheet. If you have done really well you have a very long roll and have to form a “horseshoe” on the baking sheet to fit the apple strudel onto the baking sheet. Brush the strudel with remaining butter.
- Bake until its golden brown – approximately 30 minutes. Let the strudel cool for 30 minutes, dust with powdered sugar and cut into slices and serve with warm Vanilla sauce or Vanilla ice cream and fresh whipped cream.