Originating in Austria, the desert strudel is so popular that Texas chose it in 2003 as its official pastry. The most common filling is apple but cherry and poppy seed strudels line Austrian street-side bakeries in abundance. With prepared dough, making strudel is easy and quick.
Things You'll Need
- 1 pound prepared pastry dough or frozen filo dough
- Cooking apples
- Pastry brush
- Plastic wrap
- Parchment paper or a silicone baking mat
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat. Arrange all your ingredients so you can assemble the strudel quickly once you begin. Especially if you are working with filo to prevent drying out the dough.
Peel, core and dice approximately one pound of cooking apples. Depending upon your taste, you can reduce the amount of apples by half to provide a pastry that focuses more on the flaky layers of dough than a thick filling. Dice into very small pieces approximately 1/4 -inch in diameter.
Add a handful of raisins and a teaspoon of cinnamon to the diced apples in a medium-size bowl and sprinkle ¼-cup of sugar over the mixture, stirring to combine. Set the mixture aside while you prepare the dough. Melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a small bowl and place a pastry brush within easy reach.
Roll out the pastry dough or thaw sheets of frozen filo dough. If you’re using frozen filo, place the box in the refrigerator overnight to thaw slowly. Using a rolling pin, roll pastry dough on a floured surface into the shape of a rectangle as large as your work surface allows. Filo dough is prepared by laying out a sheet and brushing with butter before placing another sheet on top. Use all the sheets in the same manner.
Work quickly once the dough is rolled out. Spread melted butter evenly over the thin dough with the pastry brush before sprinkling the apple mixture evenly over the surface. Carefully, roll the dough into a log shape and place on the parchment.
Bake for 30 minutes or until the top of the pastry is golden brown and appears flaky. Different ovens bake differently so keep and eye on your strudel and if it browns too quickly, place a sheet of aluminum foil over the top to prevent over-browning.
Allow to cool on a rack for 5 minutes before cutting and serving hot. Alternately, you can re-warm strudel in the microwave for 15 seconds before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container.
Tips & Warnings
- Brush the top of the strudel before baking with a beaten egg white for a glossy crust, with egg yolk for a soft golden crust or spray it lightly with water and sprinkle with sugar and sliced almonds for a German version.
- Photo Credit Photo, curtesy of Stock.xchng
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