Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Daring Bakers May 2009 Challenge

The May Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Linda of make life sweeter! and Courtney of Coco Cooks. They chose Apple Strudel from the recipe book Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague by Rick Rodgers.

Well, I am lateish, I am posting as I go along :p

So far I am amazed how easy the dough came together. I am always a little worried when it comes to doughs. I had a hard time mastering pie crust... so I am sure you understand. But it all came together in about 15 mins. Anyways so now its wrapped and sitting for another hour. Here is a photo of it for now. I will keep updating this as I go along. :)

Alright I have finished now :) Like I said I split it in half and made 2 small ones. Which really aren't that small. Still took one cookie sheet each, I could have baked them at the same time but I made the filling as I went along too. Anyways I managed to stretch it out without getting too many holes, the final size was 14" by 18". The amout of bread crumbs seemed like too much so I just covered the dough with them and put the rest away. I also just used an old pillow case I cut to size. I washed it on the super sanitize mode on my washer ha ha never used that one before now. I am sure one day when I have kids it will be handy :p Thin as paper, you can see the lines on the "pillow case" now my strudel sheet :p I couldn't really get it to stretch anymore I think it was too cold in my kitchen .... which is sort of weird because it is 20 degrees celsius(sp?) and I don't have air conditioning.Anyways so I got it all buttered up and bread crumbs spread. Put the apples on and rolling rolling we go.
Not the best photo ever but hey I am a baker not a photographer :p here it is all done, I haven't tried it yet. Waiting for J to come home so we can try it together...or until I get hungry and can't wait anymore.
Oh yea I also made a savory one. It has potatoes and eggs and cheese in it with assorted spices. I planned on putting mushrooms in it as well but I forgot because when I was filling it the apple one was ready to come out of the oven. So I went to take it out and then just started rolling the egg on... anyways so I forgot. Anyways I used 1 big potato cut up in to fairly small "fries" ha ha mini fries I guess. Cheese and 4 large eggs. I mixed it all together in a bowl and cooked it scrambled egg style just until the eggs weren't all juicey.... if that makes sense. I also put extra bread crumbs under the egg filling to soak up the juices. I also put salt and pepper and some other spices on the bread crumb part. It worked out pretty well. Will definately make that one again but with more cheese and I will actually remember the mushrooms next time :p. I just had one ha ha it held together nicely I might make individual ones next time and see how that works out :)Here is the recipe:
Preparation time
Total: 2 hours 15 minutes – 3 hours 30 minutes

15-20 min to make dough
30-90 min to let dough rest/to prepare the filling
20-30 min to roll out and stretch dough
10 min to fill and roll dough
30 min to bake
30 min to cool
Apple strudel
from “Kaffeehaus – Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague” by Rick Rodgers
2 tablespoons (30 ml) golden rum
3 tablespoons (45 ml) raisins
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon (80 g) sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick / 115 g) unsalted butter, melted, divided
1 1/2 cups (350 ml) fresh bread crumbs
strudel dough (recipe below)
1/2 cup (120 ml, about 60 g) coarsely chopped walnuts
2 pounds (900 g) tart cooking apples, peeled, cored and cut into ¼ inch-thick slices (use apples that hold their shape during baking)

1. Mix the rum and raisins in a bowl. Mix the cinnamon and sugar in another bowl.

2. Heat 3 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the breadcrumbs and cook whilst stirring until golden and toasted. This will take about 3 minutes. Let it cool completely.

3. Put the rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a large baking sheet with baking paper (parchment paper). Make the strudel dough as described below. Spread about 3 tablespoons of the remaining melted butter over the dough using your hands (a bristle brush could tear the dough, you could use a special feather pastry brush instead of your hands). Sprinkle the buttered dough with the bread crumbs. Spread the walnuts about 3 inches (8 cm) from the short edge of the dough in a 6-inch-(15cm)-wide strip. Mix the apples with the raisins (including the rum), and the cinnamon sugar. Spread the mixture over the walnuts.

4. Fold the short end of the dough onto the filling. Lift the tablecloth at the short end of the dough so that the strudel rolls onto itself. Transfer the strudel to the prepared baking sheet by lifting it. Curve it into a horseshoe to fit. Tuck the ends under the strudel. Brush the top with the remaining melted butter.

5. Bake the strudel for about 30 minutes or until it is deep golden brown. Cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing. Use a serrated knife and serve either warm or at room temperature. It is best on the day it is baked.

Strudel dough
from “Kaffeehaus – Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague” by Rick Rodgers

1 1/3 cups (200 g) unbleached flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons (105 ml) water, plus more if needed
2 tablespoons (30 ml) vegetable oil, plus additional for coating the dough
1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar

1. Combine the flour and salt in a stand-mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix the water, oil and vinegar in a measuring cup. Add the water/oil mixture to the flour with the mixer on low speed. You will get a soft dough. Make sure it is not too dry, add a little more water if necessary.
Take the dough out of the mixer. Change to the dough hook. Put the dough ball back in the mixer. Let the dough knead on medium until you get a soft dough ball with a somewhat rough surface.

2. Take the dough out of the mixer and continue kneading by hand on an unfloured work surface. Knead for about 2 minutes. Pick up the dough and throw it down hard onto your working surface occasionally.
Shape the dough into a ball and transfer it to a plate. Oil the top of the dough ball lightly. Cover the ball tightly with plastic wrap. Allow to stand for 30-90 minutes (longer is better).

3. It would be best if you have a work area that you can walk around on all sides like a 36 inch (90 cm) round table or a work surface of 23 x 38 inches (60 x 100 cm). Cover your working area with table cloth, dust it with flour and rub it into the fabric. Put your dough ball in the middle and roll it out as much as you can.
Pick the dough up by holding it by an edge. This way the weight of the dough and gravity can help stretching it as it hangs. Using the back of your hands to gently stretch and pull the dough. You can use your forearms to support it.

4. The dough will become too large to hold. Put it on your work surface. Leave the thicker edge of the dough to hang over the edge of the table. Place your hands underneath the dough and stretch and pull the dough thinner using the backs of your hands. Stretch and pull the dough until it's about 2 feet (60 cm) wide and 3 feet (90 cm) long, it will be tissue-thin by this time. Cut away the thick dough around the edges with scissors. The dough is now ready to be filled.

- Ingredients are cheap so we would recommend making a double batch of the dough, that way you can practice the pulling and stretching of the dough with the first batch and if it doesn't come out like it should you can use the second batch to give it another try;
- The tablecloth can be cotton or polyster;
- Before pulling and stretching the dough, remove your jewelry from hands and wrists, and wear short-sleeves;
- To make it easier to pull the dough, you can use your hip to secure the dough against the edge of the table;
- Few small holes in the dough is not a problem as the dough will be rolled, making (most of) the holes invisible.


lisamichele said...

Not only do your strudels look amazing, as well as the photos, and are super, duper flaky, but that potato, egg and cheese strudel is killing me. I want it!!

DeviousVixen said...

ha ha it was delish thanks

Cindystar said...

Good morning and good coffee!
You made it and breakfast is ok for the rest of the week! Bravo!
I guess I made a big mistake 'cause most of you spread breadcrumbs all over the dough, I did'nt understand and just put them only under the filling ...
Well, you learned how to make strudel and how to use your washing machine properly, that's a real challenge!
Have a nice day!

Claire said...

I did an egg version as well...I think I cooked the eggs too much prior to cooking the strudel because they became a bit rubbery. Yours both look fantastic.