Sunday, January 17, 2010

Apple Strudel in Phyllo Dough...A Most Delicious Dessert!

I made a tasty dessert this weekend and thought you might like to try it, too! It takes just a little time, but the results... oh.my.goodness! I found this recipe on a wonderful cooking blog called mmm...cafe, and made it for the first time about a year ago. It was definitely a hit and I printed it back then for my recipe binder. I ran across it recently and thought I'd make it again...only this time with photos, so I could share it with you! This is apparently Paula Deen's recipe (with a couple of minor adjustments). Though you will find this a very do-able recipe, can I suggest you read this entire post before you begin? (It will definitely go more smoothly...trust me.)


First, let's gather the ingredients...



You will need:

Strudel:

1/4 cup apple juice
1/2 cup golden raisins (I only had regular, so I used those)
2 medium apples (I used 1 large Gala and 1 small Granny Smith)
1/2 lemon, juiced or 1 Tbsp. of lemon juice
1 Tbsp. of lemon zest (optional - I didn't use)
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)

1/2 cup crushed shortbread cookies
1/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)

2 Tbsp of butter, cut into small pieces
10 sheets (or a few more) of phyllo dough, thawed
4 Tbsp. butter (melted) for brushing phyllo sheets
1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
Caramel sauce (optional)



Glaze:
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup confectioner's sugar (or more if too thin)
2 Tbsp. milk (or more if too thick)



Alright, now we're ready...first, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.


In a small bowl, pour apple juice over the raisins and microwave on high for 45 seconds. Let sit for 15 minutes. Oh, this already smells good!

Meanwhile...peel, core, and dice your apples. Drain the raisins somewhat and pour them over the apples. Add in lemon juice, lemon zest, cinnamon, brown sugar, cookie crumbs, pecans and small slivers of butter in a large bowl.


For the cookies, I just put them in a ziploc and then crushed them with my rolling pin.



I also chop my pecans very fine...almost crumb-like.






Stir until well-blended. Doesn't that look tasty?! Now we get to move onto the phyllo! If you're unfamiliar, phyllo is very thin sheets of dough that become delicious and flaky when baked. One thing to note...because it is so thin, it dries out very quickly. You will want a mildly damp dishtowel to lay over the sheets of dough until you're ready to use them. (Don't worry if you tear a few sheets before you get the hang of it as you should have more than plenty!)


Go ahead and melt the 4 Tbsp. of butter in a small dish.


Working on the parchment paper, lay out your first sheet of phyllo. Brush with melted butter, but don't go all the way to the edge, leave about an inch all the way around. Stack another layer of phyllo over the first, then repeat until you have 5 sheets (each of which should be brushed individually with butter as they are added). Then, spoon approximately 1/2 your apple mixture onto the nearest third of the phyllo (again, don't go all the way to the edge).



Once you've done that, you'll be ready to start rolling! First, gently lift the bottom of the edge of the phyllo and fold over once, away from you...


Now fold over each end to seal the strudel. Brush ends and top with butter. Roll once more, away from you (so that the seam should now be on the bottom). Brush what is now the top and sides of strudel with butter and sprinkle with granulated sugar.



At this stage you will realize you have enough filling to make another strudel. Since it is coated with butter, this one will sit just fine while you put together another one...I'll wait. = ) (You'll notice the second one is a little faster and easier than the first.) Once they're both finished, place them side-by-side on your parchment covered cookie sheet. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown. While they're in the oven, mix up your glaze. You want to be able to drizzle it, so add more confectioner's sugar or milk until you get it just right...


You might also want to microwave your caramel sauce, because it's sometimes too thick to drizzle.


Right about now, the most wonderful aroma should be wafting through your kitchen. Once out of the oven, move very carefully to a serving dish (I used two spatulas, one on each end). Drizzle with both the caramel sauce and the glaze (you probably won't use it all).


Now...slice and enjoy the fruit of your labor!! If you serve it warm, a little scoop of vanilla ice cream makes a perfect compliment, although this dessert is delectable all by itself!!! Gooey, flaky and the apples cook perfectly (not too soft, not too firm). I'd love to hear what you think if you try it!

A few additional notes...

* Somewhat draining the raisins was my suggestion. I didn't do that and lots of the residual liquid leaked from the strudel and made a very big mess on my cookie sheet and started to cause the bottom of the strudel to burn.



* Not a raisin lover? You could certainly leave them out, but can I suggest you don't do that? The flavor they add from being soaked in the apple juice is amazing. Not to mention, you really don't taste "raisin" just additional flavor...I promise!


* I cut the powdered sugar called for in the original recipe in half! I had tons of glaze left over! I think by only using 1 cup of confectioner's sugar, it should cut down substantially on that.



* Believe it or not, Paula's recipe only called for 2 Tbsp. of melted butter for brushing the dough. It wasn't enough! Right in the middle of working with the phyllo, I had to melt more, which is why I suggest 4 Tbsp. You may find you use less (or more).



* If you'd rather make one large strudel, instead of two small...I would definitely add a few more layers of phyllo dough.



Bon Appetit!

15 comments:

Just a little something from Judy said...

I will bring the coffee, and I will be there shortly to taste this amazingly good looking treat. Wouldn't that be so much fun! This has so many of my favorite things in it, apples, raisins, chopped nuts, cinnamon...oh my goodness! Thank you so much for sharing this. I am copying it and filing it for some special occasion.

southerninspiration said...

Oh, Oh, can I join you and Judy? That WOULD be so much fun...this recipe looks amazing....one I am going to bookmark and try out soon!! thanks so, so much for sharing!

Suzanne

Debbie said...

Looks Delicious!! I think I gained a couple pounds just looking at it. I enjoyed your blog!! Blessings, Deb

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Oh mercy, I could just reach through this screen and eat this!Alas, I don't think I have it in me to...

1. Collect the ingredients.
2. The willing time to combine them into something edible.

I'll suffice to have a piece of yours via my imagination or in person when we meet!

Blessings and peace to you this week~elaine

Beverly said...

Just found you from Southern Inspiration. Your Apple Strudel looks so yummy. I will have to try it. Loved looking back over your blog...I will be back. I have recently discoverd long lost family in Ky. and visited there twice last year. I fell in love with it. Have a blessed day.

Christy said...

Tracy,

Thank you for your comment on my post today. I am going to try and do a tutorial on how I did my header for my blog. It might be easier said than done though!

I think you should absolutely do the 365 project! I am not officially taking part through their website... that's why I started the other blog. I know I am only several days into it, but I am having a blast! Go for it!!!

Happy@Home said...

Oh my goodness, does that ever look pretty and delicious. I don't think you can go wrong with that list of ingredients. I can just imagine how wonderful it smells as it bakes too. I will be copying this recipe for future use. Thanks for sharing it.

Janean said...

wow, tracy you took the 'scary' out of apple strudel! i'll have to try this when my jeans are loose again! lol.

Tricia said...

This sounds delicious! I know it is something my husband would love! I have always been a little afraid to try to use phyllo, it seems hard to me, but maybe I can do it!

Thanks for sharing!

Blessings!

Kim... and Her Coffee said...

Hey Tracy! This recipe sounds SO wonderful. I think I would have so much fun making this with my kiddos on a cold weekend. Thanks for sharing. Hope you are doing great....

Fifi Flowers said...

Ooooh that looks YUMMY!!!

Lea said...

Good gravy..........
BE STILL my heart.
HOW ARE WE GONNA COUNT this Trac?
Just tell me that.
How?

Room to Inspire said...

Yum-o, this looks fabulous! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

Chelsea

Becky said...

YUMMMMY! Oh, man...that looks amazing. I don't DARE make it, lol.

The $20 dishes from the thrift store were a GREAT find! Wow. The Lord knew just what you needed. =)

Susan said...

Tracy!!!

This looks soooooooooo good. Lots of work. I'm impressed

Wish I could of taken just one bite of this, oh my...

Blessings to you my sweet friend!