Words like 'It's all about technique' & 'Apple Strudel' was enough for me to sit & stare at the comp screen for atleast half a minute.. must admit that I was slightly disheartened thinking whether I could EVER get that PAPER THIN dough! :( I have never made nor ever ate a strudel before... so it was completely new for me except for the recipes and videos I have seen :) Should say that those videos were the culprit for me being scared! :D
Apple strudel from “Kaffeehaus – Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague” by Rick Rodgers
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml)Golden rum
- 3 tablespoons (45 ml)Raisins
- 1/4 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon (80 g) sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick / 115 g) unsalted butter, melted, divided
- 1 1/2 cups (350 ml) fresh bread crumbs
- Strudel dough (recipe below)
- 1/2 cup (120 ml, about 60 g) coarsely chopped walnuts
- 2 pounds (900 g) tart cooking apples, peeled, cored and cut into ¼ inch-thick slices (use apples that hold their shape during baking)
1. Mix the rum and raisins in a bowl. Mix the cinnamon and sugar in another bowl.
3. Put the rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a large baking sheet with baking paper (parchment paper). Make the strudel dough as described below. Spread about 3 tablespoons of the remaining melted butter over the dough using your hands (a bristle brush could tear the dough, you could use a special feather pastry brush instead of your hands). Sprinkle the buttered dough with the bread crumbs. Spread the walnuts about 3 inches (8 cm) from the short edge of the dough in a 6-inch-(15cm)-wide strip. Mix the apples with the raisins (including the rum), and the cinnamon sugar. Spread the mixture over the walnuts.
4. Fold the short end of the dough onto the filling. Lift the tablecloth at the short end of the dough so that the strudel rolls onto itself. Transfer the strudel to the prepared baking sheet by lifting it. Curve it into a horseshoe to fit. Tuck the ends under the strudel. Brush the top with the remaining melted butter.
5. Bake the strudel for about 30 minutes or until it is deep golden brown. Cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing. Use a serrated knife and serve either warm or at room temperature. It is best on the day it is baked.
Strudel doughfrom “Kaffeehaus – Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague” by Rick Rodgers
- 1 1/3 cups (200 g) unbleached flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 7 tablespoons (105 ml) water, plus more if needed
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) vegetable oil, plus additional for coating the dough
- 1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar
3. It would be best if you have a work area that you can walk around on all sides like a 36 inch (90 cm) round table or a work surface of 23 x 38 inches (60 x 100 cm). Cover your working area with table cloth, dust it with flour and rub it into the fabric. Put your dough ball in the middle and roll it out as much as you can.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 use your forearms to support it.
4. The dough will become too large to hold. Put it on your work surface. Leave the thicker edge of the dough to hang over the edge of the table. Place your hands underneath the dough and stretch and pull the dough thinner using the backs of your hands. Stretch and pull the dough until it's about 2 feet (60 cm) wide and 3 feet (90 cm) long, it will be tissue-thin by this time. Cut away the thick dough around the edges with scissors. The dough is now ready to be filled.
Tips- Ingredients are cheap so we would recommend making a double batch of the dough, that way you can practice the pulling and stretching of the dough with the first batch and if it doesn't come out like it should you can use the second batch to give it another try;- The tablecloth can be cotton or polyester;- Before pulling and stretching the dough, remove your jewelry from hands and wrists, and wear short-sleeves;- To make it easier to pull the dough, you can use your hip to secure the dough against the edge of the table;- Few small holes in the dough is not a problem as the dough will be rolled, making (most of) the holes invisible.
- Mix soaked and stoned apricots and mangoes together.
- Add the chopped walnuts and sugar.
- Proceed like how the apple strudel was made.
- Wash,boil,peel and mash the potatoes.
- Crumble paneer.
- Mix everything together.
- Proceed with stuffing same as the apple strudel.
Verdict: The paneer & potato filled strudel got over in less than 30 mins FLAT!! :D Everytime my dad passed by the strudel, he went on commenting saying 'It's too good!! '
When I made the apple & apricot-mango strudel, only my dad was home then. He was suprised to see the triangle shaped strudels. So he took both the flavours... when I asked him 'How is it Appa?? " he was silent for a while, looked at both of them and said ' Onnu onninodu mechham' - which means... one is better than the other and he doesnt know which one is the best! :D Ahhh!! That was a proud moment for me :D