Apfelstrudel - Traditional Apple Strudel (with photo tutorial)

Cream colored ponies and crisp apple strudels…

I’ve never given much consideration to cream colored ponies. But strudels are a different story. Especially after spending time in the narrow brick lined corridors that make up Vienna’s city center.
Strudel is everywhere in that part of the world. From Hungary to Slovakia and Germany, this pulled-dough pastry can be found, filled with everything from apples to curded cheese, poppy seeds and cherries. I came home from that trip (happily) five pounds heavier and ready to govern a strudel super-pack.



This weekend, the weather changed. And my heart leaped like it has since I was a little girl. Because autumn, as it is for many of us, is my favorite season. It is, perhaps, what deep down I hope heaven will be like; knitted scarves, the babbled tones of game-day football commentators coming from the TV in the next room over, copious amounts of apple cider in pottery mugs, apple picking, bowls of chili, picnics on quilts (I argue that picnics are meant for fall, not summer), boots caked in mud and leaves after a strenuous hike, and…of course…baking.

There are more than a few strudel tutorials floating around cyberspace and sitting on library bookshelves. I did my research, jotted notes from Google translated websites, and landed on the recipe below. A blend of three strudel variations that seemed to need some overlapping on each other.

Don’t be intimidated by what you are about to see. It’s harmless. Enjoyable, in fact.

It’s definitely doable by your lonesome, but it’s more fun with someone else. I happen to have a dashing 12 year old chef as a son…lucky me. 

Apfelstrudel (Traditional Apple Strudel) 

Dough:

15 ounces (3 cups) all-purpose flour (I used King Arthur Flour for this recipe) pinch of salt 2 eggs, room temperature 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 6 ounces (3/4 cup) milk, room temperature

1 stick melted butter

Apple Filling:

2 lb apples (I used Gala)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup fine bread crumbs (I made my own from a few slices of rustic loaf bread)
1 Tbsp cinnamon
raisins, dried fruit, optional, to taste

1. Melt the butter in over low heat until melted through

2. For the pulling of the dough, you need a large table. Spread a clean tablecloth over the table or kitchen island. Flour the cloth (lightly) and turn the dough from the bowl in which it was resting, out onto the center.  With a floured rolling pin roll it out long and narrow, as much as possible. This should be easy to do and the dough should be soft and supple. Brush the dough evenly with melted butter

 

3. Now it is time to begin stretching and pulling the dough. Lift and stretch the dough to about double its size. This takes time. No need to rush it – try treating it as an active meditation time.











4. The dough should be thin enough to read a page through. 

5. Lift and stretch the dough (including the middle) until it hangs over all the sides. When finished stretching, remove the thickened edge by rolling it on a hand as it is torn off.




6. Brush the dough evenly with melted butter.

7. On one end of the long edge (about 6-10 inches from the edge), sprinkle with the bread crumbs, then mix the sugar, apples, raisins (if using) and cinnamon in a bowl and pile it, as shown, on your stretched dough.





8. Fold the dough over by lifting the cloth and quickly flipping the dough over onto itself.  Roll up the dough by grabbing the cloth on both ends of the filled side and lifting it so that the strudel rolls gently. 








9. Lift the roll in an S shape into a buttered pan (I buttered parchment paper). 

10. Brush the strudel with melted butter. Bake in a pre-heated 400F oven for about 10 minutes, then lower temperature to 350F. Bake until light brown for approximately another 25-35 minutes.



10. Let the strudel cool a bit before cutting it into pieces. Best served when still warm from the oven. Can be frozen and reheated.






11. Gift to friends 

Photobucket

*For full recipe, without photos, for printing continue on here*




Apfelstrudel - Art of Homemaking (homemaking101.com)


Dough
15 ounces (3 cups) all-purpose flour (I used King Arthur Flour for this recipe)
pinch of salt
2 eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
6 ounces (3/4 cup) milk, room temperature

*You can make this dough by hand (my preference), or in a stand mixer. I opted for a stand mixer this time around, only because it was a time saver and I needed to get out the door…
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle, combine the flour and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and oil. Add the milk. Turn the mixer on low and pour the liquid mixture into the bowl. Keep it going until a shaggy dough comes together, then switch to the dough hook and knead for about two minutes until a smooth and elastic dough is formed.
Turn off the machine, and turn the dough out onto a (very) lightly floured surface. Knead by hand for another 5 minutes, until the dough is very smooth. Rest the dough, covered in a bowl, at room temperature for at least three hours and up to an overnight.

Filling (for 1 strudel)
1 stick melted butter
2 lb apples (I used Gala)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup fine bread crumbs (I made my own from a few slices of rustic loaf bread)
1 Tbsp cinnamon
raisins, dried fruit, optional, to taste

  1. Melt the butter in over low heat until melted through.
  2. For the pulling of the dough, you need a large table. Spread a clean tablecloth over the table or kitchen island. Flour the cloth (lightly) and turn the dough from the bowl in which it was resting, out onto the center.  With a floured rolling pin roll it out long and narrow, as much as possible. This should be easy to do and the dough should be soft and supple. 
  3. Brush the dough evenly with melted butter. 
  4. Now it is time to begin stretching and pulling the dough. Lift and stretch the dough to about double its size. This takes time. No need to rush it – try treating it as an active meditation time.
  5. The dough should be thin enough to read a page through. 
  6. Lift and stretch the dough (including the middle) until it hangs over all the sides. When finished stretching, remove the thickened edge by rolling it on a hand as it is torn off.
  7. Brush the dough evenly with melted butter.
  8. On one end of the long edge (about 6-10 inches from the edge), sprinkle with the bread crumbs, then mix the sugar, apples, raisins (if using) and cinnamon in a bowl and pile it, as shown, on your stretched dough.
  9. Fold the dough over by lifting the cloth and quickly flipping the dough over onto itself.  Roll up the dough by grabbing the cloth on both ends of the filled side and lifting it so that the strudel rolls gently.
  10. Lift the roll in an S shape into a buttered pan (I buttered parchment paper). Brush the strudel with melted butter. Bake in a pre-heated 400F oven for about 10 minutes, then lower temperature to 350F. Bake until light brown for approximately another 25-35 minutes.
  11. Let the strudel cool a bit before cutting it into pieces. Best served when still warm from the oven. Can be frozen and reheated.


One strudel serves 8-10.