Recipe Apfel Strudel made with puff pastry, for Hanukkah
This crispy roll, stuffed with fruit, nuts and jelly is an Ashkenazy classic pastry. A delicacy as dessert or at tea/coffee time; warm or cold. Mostly we bake oil based sufganiyot for Hanukkah, because of the miracle that one little jar with oil enough for one day, lightened the lamps of the Temple Menorah for eight days long. Claudia Roden tells us, that the Jewish Women in Budapest and Vienna made wafer thin dough by themselves, above a special white cotton tablecloth for this case. Carefully they put their hands under the dough and pulled until the dough was shaped almost like large transparent paper, without any crack! This required a high skill. Making traditional Strudel dough is a precise work as well. As an easier alternative filo dough can be get here everywhere, in several thicknesses. But it is not tasteful and cracks too easy. That’s why I choose for the more tasteful and easier to work with; the puff pastry made with real butter. Available in small squares or bigger rolls. This way the Strudel is not parve!
Ingredients for the Apfelstrudel, serving about 8 people:
8 squares (about 5”x5” each) or 1 big roll puff pastry (about 12” x 21”)
For the filling:
3 demi sour apples, Elstars, Jonathans or Gala
2 tablespoons Lemon juice
3 tablespoons Sultana’s or yellow raisins
1/3 cup of rum, to soke the raisins (optional)
1 cup Walnuts, chopped.
1-2 teaspoon cinnamon
3-4 tablespoon Apricot jelly
For underneath the filling:
3 tablespoons of grinded almonds
To smear the surface:
1 tablespoon melted butter
1. Preheat the oven on 425°F. (220°C.)
2. Take the puff dough out of the freezer 10 minutes before using!
3. Clean the apples, don’t peel, divide in four, remove the core and cut in little pieces. Sprinkle with the lemon juice.
4. Mix the apple with the raisins, sugar, cinnamon, chopped walnuts and the apricot jelly.
5. Take the puff dough out of the freezer and let them thaw during 10 minutes on a large sheet of baking paper (about 20”x 25”). Arrange the pieces of dough 4 times 2 tight together. You can roll them out a little bit by a rolling pin. Let them overlap some millimeters. Push together so there will be no holes. Turn the dough incl. paper so the long side is on your side.
6. Spread the grinded Almonds in the middle over the length (1/3 of the width) and keep 2” distance from the wide side. Scoop the filling over this layer.
7. Now you can cut little squares (2”x2”) from the corners, to use for later decoration, fir instance dreidels (special Hanukkah tops). Now first of all fold the wide sides towards the middle and fold the long sides over the filling, a little bit overlapping. Carefully close by pushing together; egg white can help if necessary.
8. Roll the strudel upside down, using the paper. The seam must be under. An extra piece of paper can help. Bring all together, incl. paper to the baking tray. Now you can decorate the strudel.
9. Smear with melted butter, transfer the tray to the second level of the preheated oven and bake for 30-35 minutes till a gold brown coloured surface.
10. Carefully transfer incl. baking paper to a wire rack and let cool down. Serve warm or cold, covered with powdered sugar.
Enjoy this delicious Apfelstrudel in the Light of a happy Hanukkah!