Apfeltaler

I am generally a patient person. I couldn’t be an English teacher if I weren’t. However my friend Anne has got me beat. She is excellent in involving her kids in the process of cooking and food preparation. I tend to be perfectionist, and do get irritated when my kid doesn’t or can’t make it like Mommy does.

So last week we got together and made something wonderful out of two almost overripe apples. They are easy to make, and my son and his friends had a lot of fun making them. So what if they aren’t perfect? They taste divine just out of the oven, and that is all that matters.

The recipe comes from Backzeit, a baking cookbook sponsored by Swiss Milk Producers Association.

You’ll need: For the base, 200g flour, 1/2 tsp. baking powder, a pinch of salt, 3 Tbsp. sugar, 100 g cold butter, cut into small squares, and a scrambled egg.

For the toppings, 3 Apples (Cox Orange recommended, but not necessesary); cored, peeled and cut thinly lengthwise,  50 g melted butter, 2 Tbsp sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon.

Pre-heat oven to 220°C. Mix all the dry ingredients together. Add the butter and rub it with your hands into the dry ingredients. Form a well, drop the egg, and mix only until well incorporated: DO NOT KNEAD. Wrap with plastic film and chill for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, you can peel and halve the apples. Remove the cores, slice the apples in quarters, then again into thin slices. Mix the melted butter with the sugar and cinnamon.

Pinch out a walnut-sized piece of dough and roll it flat. Alternatively, you can roll the entire thing flat and use a round cookie cutter 3 inches in diameter and punch out the cookie dough.  Place the apples on them accordion-style and brush them with the butter-cinnamon mixture. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and  bake for 15 minutes. Serve warm and enjoy!

 

Apfelstreuselkuchen/ Apple Streusel Pie

I found this recipe on Chefkoch.de, one of the best recipe sites out there in my opinion, in 2010, and I’ve been using it ever since. It is simply hands down one of the best apple pies I’ve had, and I always bake this at least three times a year during apple season (September-October). I’ve contacted Stefan, who posted the recipe, and he generously  allowed me to translate it in English. Please remember that when baking, it is better use the roundish, sour apples than the sweeter ones (though that works fine too!).

Shortcrust:

300 g/ 1 cup All-purpose flour, 100 g Butter, 100 g Sugar, 1 tsp. Baking powder, 1 packet/1 Tbsp. Vanilla sugar, 2 eggs

Filling:

1.5 kg (3 pounds) apples, 50 g butter, 50 g Raisins, 50 g Sugar (10 g less if you don’t want it too sweet), and a packet of Vanilla pudding (Jell-O makes them in the US, Dr. Oetker in Europe, or you can make your own), and at least 3 Tbsp. of Cinnamon powder (for Cinnamon fans.)

Streusel:

150 g All-purpose flour,100 g Butter, 100 g Sugar.

Prepare the shortcrust by combining all the ingredients and knead it by hand or with a kneader in a bowl. When it is well combined, cover it with plastic wrap and let it sit in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

Prepare the filling: peel, slice, and quarter the apples, removing the seeds and the core. In a heavy-bottomed medium-sized pot, cook the apples over medium head, adding the butter, raisins, and sugar. Stir once in a while over the heat until the apples turn into a gelatinous mass/mush with some apple pieces. This takes about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the pudding according to packet instructions. Normally, that means 400 g pudding mix, 40 g sugar, and 2 cups/ 500 ml of heated milk. Stir in the pudding powder and sugar in some cold milk,  add it into the heated milk and mix with a wire whisk until smooth. Take off the heat and set aside. You can now pre-heat the oven.

Take the shortcrust out of the fridge, and roll flat in batches. In a greased springform pan, lay the shortcrust and create a wall of around 3 cm or one and a half inches on all sides. Press and stretch to make the seams join and to cover up holes. The sides don’t have to be perfectly straight! Pour in the cooled pudding, then the apple mixture.

In the same bowl, you can put all of the ingredients for the Streusel, knead until the mixture is well-incorporated. Take a handful of the mixture, and pinch off bits of the dough with your thumb and index finger over the pie and repeat this until the dough is used up and the pie is completely covered. Place into the pre-heated oven and bake at 160° C for one hour.  To make the streusel brown, turn up the heat to 200° C in the last 10 minutes. Enjoy!