An amazing blend of sweet and tart come together in this tantalizing Austrian apple strudel dessert! This isn’t just for dessert though, a slice of this gorgeous tart would make a scrumptious holiday breakfast treat…
Apple strudel is a popular pastry in Austria as well as many European countries that once belonged to the Austro-Hungarian Empire. This is a traditional Viennese strudel. While his traditional apple strudel isn’t particularly difficult to prepare, it can be a bit time-consuming.
Traditional Austrian, Czech, Hungarian and Polish strudel pastries differ from strudels from other countries because the pastry dough is quite elastic in texture. It’s created using a high gluten flour, water, oil, and salt and it lacks sugar or sweeteners of any kind.
Austrian Apple Strudel Recipe
2 pounds tart apples peeled, cored, sliced into thin wedges
1 1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/3 cup, plus 1 tablespoon white sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided, plus extra for brushing
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tbs Rum (or Apple Juice)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup COLD water, may not use all of it
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus extra for coating
1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 pinch kosher salt
powdered sugar, garnish
In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, then add breadcrumbs stirring constantly until the breadcrumbs are lightly toasted. Remove from heat, set aside to cool completely.
Combine cinnamon, brown sugar and white sugar in a bowl, mixing well, set aside.
In a large bowl place prepared apples, sprinkle with the rum, pour the cinnamon-sugar mixture over the apples and toss gently to completely coat all of the apples. Set aside while preparing the dough.
If you happen to have a KitchenAid mixer, this is considerably easier, just place the flour and salt together in the bowl. Use the whisk attachment for a minute or so to blend, then switch to the paddle attachment. Add most of the water, then oil and vinegar, mixing until mixture forms a ball. You may not need All of the water.
Knead the dough by hand until it’s smooth and no longer sticky. You can add a sprinkle of flour if needed.
Preheat the oven to 400F
Roll the dough out into a 9×13 rectangle on a floured surface (or a pastry mat). Be sure the dough will lift up easily before proceeding.
Using your hands, lightly brush the dough with 3 Tbs of melted butter, then sprinkle the toasted breadcrumbs evenly over the dough, top with the lightly chopped walnuts. (You can omit the nuts if desired)
Gently press or pat them down. Spoon the apples out on the strudel dough (leaving about 2 inches on the sides untouched.) The filling will appear like a column along the short edge of the dough. Don’t just pour the apples onto the dough as there will likely be up to 3 Tbs of juices left in the bowl, which will make your strudel soggy!
Once again, brush the exposed edges with melted butter and fold in the sides of the dough. Place the strudel onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and brush it with melted butter. Sprinkle plain white sugar on the top, if desired.
Bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown.
When it’s done baking, immediately brush with melted butter and dust lightly with powdered confectioners sugar on the top. The easiest way to cut the strudel is with a serrated bread knife in thick 1 1/2-2″ slices.
Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired.