Easy Apple Strudel

Published September 1, 2003.

Why this recipe works:

For a strudel recipe with a crisp, flaky crust that would hold its shape, we handled the phyllo dough carefully, sprinkling butter and sugar between its layers for a cohesive crust. We found that browning the bread crumbs in butter for our strudel recipe prevented an overtly bready flavor.… read more

For a strudel recipe with a crisp, flaky crust that would hold its shape, we handled the phyllo dough carefully, sprinkling butter and sugar between its layers for a cohesive crust. We found that browning the bread crumbs in butter for our strudel recipe prevented an overtly bready flavor. Baking the strudel in a very hot oven for just 15 minutes crisped the phyllo but didn’t dry it out.

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Serves 6 to 8

Note that Athens phyllo, the most commonly available brand (as well as our preferred brand), is sold in two sizes. Both are 1-pound packages, with the larger size containing 20 sheets measuring 18 by 14 inches and the smaller size containing 40 sheets measuring 14 by 9 inches—exactly half the size of the larger sheets. We prefer the larger sheets in our strudel, but if all you can find are the smaller sheets, divide the filling evenly and make two smaller strudels. The best ways to defrost the phyllo are in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for three to four hours; it doesn't defrost well in the microwave. Make sure that the phyllo sheets you use for the strudel are not badly torn. If they have small cuts or tears in the same location (sometimes an entire package sustains cuts in the same spot), when forming the strudel, flip alternating layers so that the cuts will not line up, thereby creating a weak spot that can cause the strudel to burst during baking. Serve the strudel warm with lightly sweetened crème fraíche or whipped cream; if you chose to make the crème fraíche, make it before starting the strudel because it must stand at room temperature for about 1 1/2 hours before serving.

Ingredients

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