A collaboration of different cultures originated this special pastry. In Germany, strudel translates to 'whirlpool', in reference to its swirly interior.
AmaWaterways Beyond magazine has one of the best Strudel recipes. Although it looks complicated, it's surprisingly easy and tasty. The recipe suggests using grams, but I went with our regular measure.
I tried this again using store-bought Phyllo dough instead of making the dough from scratch. Make sure to have the filling ready before you take the Phyllo out because it drys quickly. Then go back to the recipe starting at Filling the Dough.
This short cut produced a flaky Strudel equally as scrumptious as the original method but without the concern about getting the dough just right. Like in the photo, I topped my version with Powder Sugar drizzled with a Raspberry Coulis (puree sauce). The only problem was that I didn't make more...
Hope you get a chance to try this recipe.
FOR THE STRUDEL DOUGH
1/3 cup lukewarm water
1 tablespoon, plus 1/2 teaspoon neutral-tasting vegetable oil
½ teaspoon vinegar (or lemon juice)
1/8 teaspoon salt or fine sea salt
1 cup bread or substitute with all-purpose flour (145 g)
½ teaspoon vegetable oil for brushing the dough
flour for dusting
*For the dough, we recommend measuring the flour by weight in grams if you are able since it is more accurate than measuring by volume.
FOR THE FILLING
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2/3 cups fine breadcrumbs
5 tablespoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoon raisins
3 tablespoons rum or lukewarm water for soaking the raisins
2 lbs sweet-tart apples (e.g. McIntosh)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons melted butter for brushing the dough (divided)
confectioners sugar for dusting
whipped cream for serving (optional)
TO MAKE DOUGH
Preheat oven to 375° F. Mix water, oil, vinegar and salt in a bowl. Stir in half the flour with a spoon until well combined. Gradually add remaining flour until it comes together
Knead the dough for about 10 minutes until smooth and moist. If too sticky to knead, add a little flour. Slam the dough onto the work surface a few times until elastic dough forms.
Shape dough into a smooth ball. Brush a clean bowl with oil, place dough into the bowl and brush it with oil. Cover bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and let sit for 1 hour at room temperature.
TO MAKE FILLING
Melt butter in a pan over medium heat and add the breadcrumbs. Toast and stir until golden. Remove from heat and let cool. Mix sugar and cinnamon together, then add to the buttered breadcrumbs, Stir well and set aside. Next, soak the raisins in rum (traditional) or water for about 10 minutes to soften. Peel, cut and core apples into thin slices and cover with lemon juice. Add the raisins (without the remaining rum or water) and mix well.
Roll out dough with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface. Flour the surface and dough occasionally while rolling. When at 13-15 inches in diameter, pick the dough up and use the back of your hands to stretch it out like a pizza. When the dough is bigger and thinner (or difficult to handle), place it on a lightly floured tablecloth. Smooth any wrinkles on both the tablecloth and dough.
Gently stretch the dough paper-thin, working your way around the sheet of dough on the tablecloth. Ultimately, it should look translucent and be stretched into a rectangular shape with the shorter edge fitting the baking sheet lengthwise. Thick edges should be cut off.
FILLING THE DOUGH
Brush half the dough with half of the butter. Spread the breadcrumb mixture over the other half of the dough and pat down evenly. One side is brushed with butter now, the other side is covered with breadcrumbs.
Leave 1 to 1 ½ inch margin of space along edges.
Spread the apples over the breadcrumbs.
Fold in the side-ends of the dough. Using the towel and starting at the apple-topped end, roll dough all the way. Then, gently roll the strudel onto a sheet of parchment paper, seam-side down. Place dough onto a baking sheet and brush it with the remaining melted butter.
BAKING THE STRUDEL
Place baking sheet on the middle rack of the preheated oven and bake for 30-45 minutes at 375° until crust is golden. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Then cut into piece and serve dusted with confectioner's sugar.
Your apple strudel is ready!