Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Simply Strudel

I always get excited when I know that I'll have people to share my Daring Baker challenges with. This month, I was able to share the strudel with my family when they came for my graduation! 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. After we went to lunch on Friday, I came back to my apartment and quickly put together a little dessert strudel while some of my family ran errands. I made the dough the night before and let it sit overnight as was suggested on one of the forums. One thing that frustrated me about the dough was the stickiness of it. The instructions say to knead it for 10-15 minutes...well, I couldn't knead it at all it was so sticky. However, I didn't want to put too much flour in it, so I quit kneading. Don't think it hurt the dough. When it came to stretching the dough, I split it into two pieces because I didn't have enough room to do it in one big piece. Surprisingly, it stretched fairly easily; though, I did have a hard time getting the dough on the edge to be thin, which resulted in thick pieces on the end. For the filling, I used what I had available...strawberries and chocolate. I simply sprinkled cinnamon on the dough after spreading some butter over it. I used oatmeal instead of bread crumbs...because I didn't have bread crumbs! Then I just put defrosted TN strawberries and chocolate chips on the dough and rolled. I think that was my favorite part...rolling! Unfortunately, the juices from the strawberries seeped out of the strudel. I did put too much chocolate in the pastry, which my dad commented on..."Next time it needs more fruit and less chocolate" and my brother responded with, "Fruit, what fruit" (knowing full well there were strawberries in there!). For the other half of the dough I scrambled some eggs, crisped some bacon, and tossed it all together with some cheese. The pastry for this one was a bit tough and the eggs got a little tough as well...I'm sure this is from being cooked twice. Probably would have been better to undercook the eggs a little first and then bake it. Overall, both of these were very good! The dough was easy to make (surprisingly) and was fun to put together. If I made this again, I think that I would like to try a spanikopita-like filling with spinach and feta or maybe roasted veggies with feta. Yum! Thanks for a great challenge, Linda and Courtney. Check out more results here. Here is the recipe for the dough and the instructions on how to fill. I'm not posting the apple filling since that's not what I used.

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.

5. 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 above. Spread about 3 tablespoons (I used about 2) of 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 bread crumbs. Spread the filling about 3 inches (8 cm) from the short edge of the dough in a 6-inch-(15cm)-wide strip.

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.

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.

52 comments:

LegalAlien said...

Good job!
And congratulations on your graduation, Dr. Claire!

Cate O'Malley said...

I love how the strawberry one is bursting at the seams with all those juicy berries! The savory one sounds delicious - anything with crispy bacon has got to be good.

April said...

Congrats on your graduation!! Ok, so the chocolate and strawberry combo sounds fantastic in this!!

Deeba @Passionate About Baking said...

I think you did a darned GOOD job there. My pastry never came close to as thin & transparent as yours...well done on the challenge! Love the combination you chose...just heavenly! Congrats on your graduation!

Sara said...

Mmm, looks delicious! I'm impressed with how thin you got the pastry! :)

tina said...

Congratulations on your graduation. Good work.

Karen said...

Congratulations! And you got your dough so thin! Well done :)

Lisa Michelle said...

First off, congrats on yyour graduation. Secondly, your strudel looks and sounds heavenly..strawberries and chocolate is a never fail in my mind :) Plus, your dough looks great! Incredible job!!

Dragon said...

Congratulations on your graduation. Great job on this month's challenge!

Speedbump Kitchen said...

Yea! Another DB pediatrician! Enjoy residency, really, it is an experience like none other. I would never want to go back now and do it with kids...but it was such an awesome life-changing and faith-sharpening time.

Isolated Foodie said...

Before I knew the filling, that first picture looked SO decadent. Must be the chocolate! Great looking strudel.

Zita said...

Congrats on your graduation, perfect choice to keep celebrating with the strudel... love your filings :)

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Very well done! Delicious looking and sounding!

Congrats on your graduation!

Cheers,

Rosa

Judy said...

Congratulations on your graduation! That's quite an accomplishment. Strudel just takes practice, so keep trying. The strawberry filling sounded delicious, too.

Raje said...

A strawberry chocolate strudel sounds delish!!!. I really need to try a sweet strudel the next time.

linda said...

Congratulations on your graduation!
Glad you liked the challenge, you did a wonderful job!

Lauren said...

Your strudels look awesome =D. Congrats on your graduation!!

Celeste said...

First of all, CONGRATS on your graduation!!! Your strudel came out wonderfully...Well done!!!

Rachel said...

love the flavours and good job on the challenge.

In Definition said...

claire! congrats on your graduation. what an accomplishment!!!!!!!

Leanne said...

mmm strawberry and chocolate, sounds like my favorite crepe, but crispier (and better!)

awoz said...

Loveley strudel with a lovely filling:) The dough looks perfect:)

Valérie said...

Strawberries and chocolate... now why didn't I think of that! And an eggs-and-bacon strudel is a great idea! (What would you call a breakfast strudel? A "brudel"?)

And your pastry is impressively thin! Way to go!

This is the first time I've stumbled onto your blog, but all the same: congratulations on graduating!

Clumbsy Cookie said...

They both look delicious! I also thought about making a savory version, but then I didn't have time...

isa said...

Congratulations! A strawberry chocolate strudel sounds delicious!
Great job!

Natashya said...

Looks great! I love that you iced it.

Linda said...

How fun that you made this in celebration of your graduation! Congratulations on a big achievement.

Your strudel looks lovely, especially the strawberries and chocolate! Yummmm!

CRUISNDIVA said...

Strawberries and Chocolate....how could you possibly go wrong~lol Looks delish and congrats on your graduation!!

The Irreverent Cook said...

Congrats on your graduation! And your dough looks sooo thin! The flavor combinations sounds divine too =D

Sue Sparks said...

Chocolate, strawberries, oats...it all sounds(and looks) scrumptious!

WOW, Congrats on your new title, Doctor!

Jenny said...

Well done! Your strawberry-chocolate combo makes me want to open a jar of Nutella... Yum. :)

sweetakery said...

thanks and yes everyone loves my tester more then my strudel hehe..yours look yum all the filling Oozing out yum! thanks for dropping by.

Jenny said...

don't think I'd have liked the egg one either, but the chocolate one, yummy!
congrats on your graduation!

art and lemons said...

Mmm, strawberries and chocolate in a fine pastry shell. It looks amazing! Congrats on your graduation!

madcapcupcake said...

Chocolate and strawberry = YUM

Hannah said...

Your strudels both look so delicious! And you're right, spanikopida would be another great variation... Perhaps I'll have to try that myself!

Sugar Chef said...

Congratulations on your graduation and your strudel. Great job!!

Cheri said...

Wow! I can't believe how super thin you got yours. Strawberries and chocolate sounds devine.

Fahrenheit 350° said...

I share everyone's sentiment and offer my congratulations as well! That dough is so thin! Great job!

Stephanie said...

Congratulations on becoming a doctor and making a wonderful strudel!

Laurel said...

So delicious! The strawberries in my strudel tried to escape too! Sneaky little things... ;-)

Aparna said...

Strawberries and chocolate chips in strudel sounds delicious. I like the "rolling" bit a lot too. :)

Maryanna said...

Mmm. I love the idea of a breakfast strudel. Great job!

Joey Biscotti said...

The strawberry-chocolate is what I want!!! Too much chocolate??? NEVER!!!

Faery said...

Well I love just like that, full of chocolate and some fruits, the pastry looks really good and the scrmbled eggs one looks yummy to me.

Jaime said...

great job and congrats on your graduation :) my husband's graduation is next week and we are all very proud o him!

Jen said...

Congratulations on your graduation. The chocolate strawberry strudel sounds great, even if it was a little juicy!

Audax said...

congrats on your graduation and wonderful job on this challenge your pastry looks so thin and flaky. Cheers

Gabriella said...

Great job! Beautiful strudel!

Holly said...

Oh, I love the idea of a savory breakfast strudel!

minisuperbias said...

very creative. looks yummy!

Y said...

Belated congratulations on your graduation! The strudels look great, and the pastry itself looks so well done!