Apple Strudel

Today is Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. Naturally, after services last night there was an oneg, food for the congregation to eat. In my small congregation, this is always a potluck, and for Rosh Hashanah, it tends to be fruit and sweets, along with the traditional challah, and apples and honey so that the new year is sweet.  It is traditional to make desserts with apple, or honey cake, in keeping with the holiday. I decided on an apple strudel. Of course, since I still have mountains of plums, I also made a plum strudel – but more about that later.

This strudel uses on of my favorite techniques, phyllo dough instead of fatty pastry dough. Phyllo (or filo) is paper-thin sheets of raw, unleavened flour dough used for making pastries or savory dishes with a flaky crust. When layers of phillo are baked, they become flaky, but have little fat.  The technique used is to stack the very thin sheets of phyllo, spraying each with cooking spray before adding the next sheet.  This strudel recipe came from Cooking Light.

Apple Strudel

1/3 cup golden raisins
3  Tablespoons  amaretto (almond-flavored liqueur) I lacked amaretto, so I used Fra Angelico, or hazelnut liqueur
3 cups coarsely chopped peeled Granny Smith apples
1/3 cup sugar
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
8 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed
Butter-flavored cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350. Prepare a large baking sheet or jelly roll pan by spraying with butter-flavored cooking spray.

Combine raisins and amaretto in a bowl. Microwave at high 1½ minutes; drain well. Combine raisins, apples, sugar, flour, and cinnamon in a bowl. Toss well, and set aside.

Place 1 phyllo sheet on a large work surface (cover remaining dough to keep from drying); lightly coat phyllo sheet with cooking spray. Place one phyllo sheet at a time atop the others, coating each with cooking spray as you stack the layers. Place a sheet of plastic wrap over stacked phyllo, pressing gently to seal sheets together; discard plastic wrap.

Spoon apple mixture along 1 long edge of phyllo, leaving a 2-inch border (it will actually cover most of the phyllo). Fold over the short edges of phyllo to cover 2 inches of apple mixture on each end.

Starting at long edge with 2-inch border, roll up jelly-roll fashion. (Do not roll tightly, or strudel may split.) Place strudel, seam side down, on the prepared pan. Score diagonal slits into top of strudel using a sharp knife. Lightly spray strudel with cooking spray.

Bake 35 minutes or until golden brown. This makes 8 servings at about 1 gram of fat/serving. This tastes heavenly on its own, but whipped cream or low fat ice cream would make a nice addition. Be sure to add the extra fat grams.

apple strudel

You will note another, misshapen, strudel in the foreground beside the apple strudel. This is the ill-fated plum strudel.  I used a different recipe, and, although it tasted terrific, it fell apart. I think that the plums I used were much juicier than the plums the recipe anticipated – and unlike the apple strudel the recipe did not call for flour to thicken the filling. Mind you, both strudels disappeared from the table in minutes.  But I’m going to make the plum strudel again to perfect it – after all, it’s not like I don’t have plums.

L’ShanaTova. May you be written down for a good year.

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ABOUT KAREN

I have lost 200 pounds. I did not do it through surgery – I don’t like knives and needles – or by joining a club, vigorous exercise, or rigorous dieting. I did it by gourmet cooking. To be precise, by cooking low fat, really delicious food. I love to cook as much as I love to eat. Food magazines are some of my favorite reading. I would feel deprived if I couldn’t have the sensuous experience of good food crossing my lips. This blog is about my perpetual feast, my passionate love of food, with recipes, photos, and occasional advice and principles that I have learned along the way.

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