Is there anything better then morning pastries hot out of the oven? The smell of brioche waiting to be dripping in butter and jam, the perfect crispiness of fresh croissants, the steam as you open a hot cinnamon bun?
The only problem with morning pasties is that you need to prep for a couple hours the night before and relinquish your sleep in to let them proof and bake. Which in my books is a big problem. I want to sleep in, read the Sunday paper for a bit and then skip over to the kitchen throw something together and have it smell like a bakery. Which may not be realistic.
But I can sleep in, bake for 30 minutes, read the Sunday Times and half an hour later have fresh apple strudels, which is a pretty okay compromise I think.
Strudels are not hard to make. You make a very easy dough and let it sit for half an hour. While its sitting you chop up a few apples and stew them in some sugar and cinnamon until they get nice and translucent. Then you roll out the dough very thin which is surprisingly easy, it’s a very easy to work dough. You top on your apples roll the whole thing up and put it in the oven.
And then the smell starts.
The cooking dough, caramelizing apple breakfast pastry smell.
And you just sit there and read your paper and drink your coffee until the smell gets almost overwhelmingly wonderful. And then you pop it out of the oven and let it cool just a little and theny ou slice it up and eat it and feel like the queen of the universe. Or maybe that’s just me.
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups flour
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/3 cup warm water
1/2 cup butter, melted
Mix all ingredients together with a wooden spoon or spatula.
Knead like bread until dough begins to come together, I did this in my mixer with the dough hook but you could easily do it by hand. Don’t go to crazy, just knead for a couple minutes.
Put it aside, somewhere warm, maybe near your oven.
In the meantime make your apple filling.
4 cooking apples, I used ambrosia but whatever kind you like best.
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon
Slice up your apples put them in a pot and simmer until they start to simmer a bit.
Add in the sugar and cinnamon and cook a bit longer. Don’t worry if it’s a bit soupy, you can take leave the liquid behind and just use the slices.
Preheat the oven to 400F
Now roll the dough into a long rectangle.
It will be very easy to roll and roll it as thin as you possibly can. I could easily see the wood grain of my counter top through the dough.
Spoon the apple mixture into a line all along the dough along one of the long ends.
Carefully fold the dough over the apples
and then roll the dough with the apples until all the dough is wrapped around the filling.
Carefully transfer to your baking sheet.
Cut the ends and score the top to allow steam to escape.
Now bake for 20 minutes, turn the oven down to 300 and bake for twenty more.
Then get it on a cuttin board, slice them up and it it while its still hot and glorious!
That wasn’t so bad was it? And seriously how good does your house smell….