The main challenge was to make the super thin strudel pastry dough which is one of the only pastry doughs I've ever made which doesn't contain butter (practically diet food).
The trick is to stretch it out on a floured cloth and not to panic when you see holes appearing in the dough like a pair of old tights. Given the elasticity of the dough, it was actually easier to manipulate than I feared and I soon had my (somewhat laddered) sheet ready to fill.
To make the frangipane, I creamed butter, pistachios, egg, a little flour and a few drops of rosewater. Delicious.
I spread the fruit puree and the frangipane over the dough and used the cloth to make a rather uninspiring looking sausage:
Which I then shaped into an even less appetising looking horseshoe and baked for 30 minutes.
The strudel dough was crisp and flakey but it was definitely just a shell for the more flavoursome filling. I'm not sure whether the pastry turned out as it should have done - it was fine but it didn't really ring my cowbell! I was very happy with the filling though. The mixture of pistachios, dried fruit and rosewater was moist, fragrant and delicious. I would definitely try this filling in a tart, perhaps with figs as well...
250g dried apricots/dried dates soaked in a little boiling water with rum if you please
- Grind the pistachios with half of the sugar in a food processor until they are in fine crumbs.
- In a food mixer (or with a wooden spoon) beat the butter until it is soft. Add the remaining sugar and cream until fluffy.
- Add the egg and mix it in well. Add the rosewater (you may want to add more to taste).
- Stir in the pistachios and flour until you have a chunky paste.
- Meanwhile puree your dried fruit.
- Spread the dried fruit paste onto the pastry and top with the pistachio frangipane.
The May Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Linda of make life sweeter! and Courtney of Coco Cooks. They chose Apple Strudel from the recipe book Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague by Rick Rodgers.
PS. Klaus the Austrian goat was not impressed with the departure from the traditional!