Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Homemade Strudel - Viennese Apple Strudel

According to Wiki - "traditional Austrian Strudel pastry is different from strudels served in other parts of the world that are often made from filo or puff pastry. The traditional Strudel pastry dough is very elastic. It is made from flour with a high gluten content, egg, water, and butter with no sugar added. The dough is worked vigorously, rested, and then rolled out and stretched by hand very thinly. Pertaining to anecdotes, purists say, it should be so thin that a newspaper can be read through it. A legend has it that the Austrian Emperor's perfectionist cook decreed that it should be possible to read a love letter through it. The thin dough is laid out on a tea towel, and the filling is spread on it. The dough with the filling on top is rolled up carefully with the help of the towel and baked in the oven." 

I was told that i was crazy to make the strudel pastry from scratch but it's me, crazy Lily, always wanting to bake from scratch.  It was not that difficult and i am glad i gave this recipe a go,   I was especially interested to know if by keeping the dough warm would enable to stretch it better and it did, the difficult part for me was that it was winter and the kitchen was colder, so, the warm cloth used to keep the bowl warm was not very efficient.  The next time around, i would use the heat pad which i use for my back pain.  Can anyone give me an idea of how to keep the boil warm for 45 minutes besides using the hot towel or the heat pad, much appreciated.  Now that i know that keeping the dough warm while it rested enabled it to stretch better, I can apply this way to other recipes like making roti canai or mein fun koh. etc..

For the pastry

250 g/9 ozs all purpose flour
1 tbsp oil
1 egg
1 tbsp butter
125 ml/4 fl oz lukewarm water

For the filling

125 g/4 1/2 oz butter
4 tbsp fresh breadcrumbs
85 g/3 ozs raisins
7 granny smith apples
85 g/3 oz chopped almonds
1 tsp ground cinnamon
115 g/4 ozs fine granulated sugar
2 tbsp confectioners' sugar

Makes 1 large or 2 small strudels


To make the pastry:

Put flour into the food processor and add in the rest of the ingredients - oil, egg, butter and lukewarm water.  Pulse until a smooth dough is formed.

Remove from food processor and shape into a ball.

Heat a bowl by pouring in hot water, discard water and wipe dry.  Invert the heated bowl over the dough, leaving it for about 45 minutes.  Maintain temperature of the bowl by repeatedly covering it with a warm, damp cloth.

To make the filling:

Melt all but 1 tbsp of butter in a pan. 

Add breadcrumbs and fry until golden brown. 

Cover raisins with warm water and let soak for 15 minutes, drain.

Peel and core apples, slice thinly.

Combine raisins, apples, almonds, cinnamon, sugar and breadcrumbs in a bowl.

Preheat oven to 400 f/200 c.

Spread out a clean cloth kitchen towel, sprinkle thickly with flour and place the dough on it.

Roll dough out thinly.

Melt 1 tbsp butter and brush the dough with it.  Dust hands with flour and slide them under the pastry into a position that makes it possible to stretch the dough well in all directions.  The dough must be stretched so thinly that the pattern of the towel is visible through it.

Spread filling over the pastry, keep clear of the sides and lower edge.  Begin at the narrow end of towel and carefully roll strudel up, using the towel to help.  Firmly press the edge and sides together.  Leave whole or cut in half or into slices.

Grease a baking tray(i use the silpat - no need to grease), carefully place strudel on it and bake for 30 - 40 minutes.

Sprinkle with icing sugar while still warm.

Step by Step:


CaThY said...

very unique :)

MaryMoh said...

Wow....must be so fun to be able to stretch the dough until so thin without breaking. That's skill! Looks like can make roti canai out of it :D

Sunflower said...

Well done. Nice thin pastry.

I do have a little trick to keep dough warm or prove bread dough in winter.

Do you have a large ice chest or polystyrene box?

Fill a container or jug with boiling water, cover with lid or cling film to prevent condensation in the chest that will make the dough wet.

Put this hot water at the corner of the chest or box then put the dough in not too close in contact with the hot water.

This will keep the chest/box or anything in it warm for at least 2 hours.

lena said...

you are really adventurous for making these strudels, they look great to me! to keep the dough warm, do you think you can put the bowl near the heater/warmer..not too sure.

MosesOng said...

OMG, I thought I'm the only person who keep the "Hong Kong Flour" sag! Did you buy a 50lb sag of the HK Flour? I did, but some how my pau is still not white, did your pau come put white using that flour?

lilyng said...


yes, you are absolutely right, 50 lbs of hk flour. Yes, the paus made from this flour were whiter than regular bleached all purpose

lilyng said...

sunflower and lena

thanks for your valuable tips. I love putting bread to proof on top of the air vent in the winter too. Putting in a heated chest would helped too. thanks again so much ladies.

olivia said...

Hmm i love to try this out this recipe soon.. thanks for sharing

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