Friday, February 14, 2014

Almásrétes - apple strudel

Life is full of little small stories, some said, some sweet, some happy, and one of these led me into baking strudels.
It all started with a nice old lady from the neighborhood, still in Love with his husband, and looking forward to surprise him with something special for Valentines day..

I liked my grandma's cabbage strudels, but never made them before, so I started a short but intense journey into learning how make home made phyllo (fillo) dough, and get just the right amount of sourness and sweetness into my filling.

It was surprisingly easy, and you will see more of them on the blog for sure.


150 g bread crumbs
80-100 g butter
6 - 7 apples, I prefer Granny Smith, it should be something sour and with more consistency..
150 g sugar
1 lemon zest
1/2 lemon's juice
1 tbsp cinnamon
80 g grated almond (I just use my hand as a measure and spread about 2 handful on the apples)
100 g raising, soaked, optionally sprinkled with rum (flavor)

150 - 200 g butter, melted
50 g powdered sugar for decoration

First we prepare the dough. Check the Phyllo dough for details.

In about 80-100 g butter fry the breadcrumbs until golden brown. Set aside to cool. 

Meanwhile cut the apples into 8, and start slicing them in very thin slices, like 1-2 mm thick.
Put the in a bowl, sprinkle with the 150 g sugar, cinnamon, lemon zest, lemon juice, and mix it well.
Add the raisins as well.
I prefer to keep the almonds unmixed, not to get soft, but up to you, you can mix in the almonds as well.

Preheat the oven to 200 C,  400 F.
And now we start filling the pastry.
Sprinkle and very lightly brush the dough everywhere. Spread the breadcrumb all over the dough, evenly.
Place about 1/3 of the apples on one shorter edge, another 1/3 on the other shorter edge, but leave about 5 cm, 2 inches empty on both sides.

Now spread the remaining 1/3 in the middle of the dough, evenly. Sprinkle the almond slices all over on the top of the apples, again, kinda evenly.
Now cover the filling with the dough left on the sides, a little on the sides too, not to have the filling falling out, and we start rolling so, that the two halfs meet at the middle.
Arrange the dough in a straight line, and place it in your tray. at this point it helps if you had a roughly 60 cm wide dough, because it will fit nicely into your tray. Adjust if needed.
Brush with butter, place it on the lower second rack of the oven, and bake for about 30-40 minutes. Nooo, you can't just leave it there :).
When starts to get a nice golden color get the tray out just a little to reach the strudel and brush with butter.

Repeat 3-5 times in the next 10 minutes.
When nice and golden brown, remove from the oven, brush again with butter, and let it cool.
When cooler sift some powdered sugar on top.
Serve fresh, lukewarm, maybe with some vanilla ice cream.. Nyammm...

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