Thursday, December 31, 2009
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
The kumquats are from my garden, I candied them a couple days ago.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Saturday, December 05, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Monday, November 09, 2009
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Monday, November 02, 2009
I used a 10 cup bundt pan and cut the cake down to resemble a pumpkin. I reduced fresh orange juice to make my orange concentrate and it worked out quite well. The cake is flavorful, has a nice texture, not too sweet and worked nicely with the orange buttercream.
I made my leaf and stem decorations out of gumpaste.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Sunday, October 18, 2009
I put my baking stone into the oven and heated it up to 350 degrees while I made the cake batter. The batter was easy to make, using Rose's technique of adding the butter to the flour mixture, instead of creaming the butter first. I love cake batter, so in the name of research I took a spoonful of it. Yum!! The rest of the batter was plopped on the top of the apples and spread to even it out. I baked the cake right on top of the stone in a regular oven for 45 minutes. As soon as I took it out of the oven I inverted it onto the platter. I lifted off the cake pan and was left with a perfect cake. I put on the toasted walnuts, cut into it and ate the most heavenly piece of warm Apple Upside Down Cake.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Saturday, October 03, 2009
It should be a lot of fun so stay tuned for some scrumptious pictures. We won't be publishing the recipes because they are all in Rose's book and you just must get your own copy. I have all her other books and they are very good, well written and the recipes work. You can also join the Heavenly Cake Bakers just head on over to Marie's blog for the rules and to sign up (just clic on the widget below). When you get there you will see a little video clip of Rose promoting her book and the Heavenly Cake Bakers. She plans on visiting our blogs to see how we like her recipes.
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
I baked off the vols-au-vent and put the peaches and sauce in it, sprinkled a few pistachios on the plate and when my husband gets home from work he will have this dessert waiting for him. He will be one happy camper because it tastes and smells heavenly.
plus extra flour for dusting work surface
Check the capacity of your food processor before you start. If it cannot hold the full quantity of ingredients, make the dough into two batches and combine them.
Put the all-purpose flour, cake flour, and salt in the work bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade and pulse a couple of times just to mix. Add the water all at once, pulsing until the dough forms a ball on the blade. The dough will be very moist and pliable and will hold together when squeezed between your fingers. (Actually, it will feel like Play-Doh.)
Remove the dough from the machine, form it into a ball, with a small sharp knife, slash the top in a tic-tac-toe pattern. Wrap the dough in a damp towel and refrigerate for about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, place the butter between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and beat it with a rolling pin until it flattens into a square that's about 1" thick. Take care that the butter remains cool and firm: if it has softened or become oily, chill it before continuing.
Unwrap the dough and place it on a work surface dusted with all-purpose flour (A cool piece of marble is the ideal surface for puff pastry) with your rolling pin (preferably a French rolling pin without handles), press on the dough to flatten it and then roll it into a 10" square. Keep the top and bottom of the dough well floured to prevent sticking and lift the dough and move it around frequently. Starting from the center of the square, roll out over each corner to create a thick center pad with "ears," or flaps.
Place the cold butter in the middle of the dough and fold the ears over the butter, stretching them as needed so that they overlap slightly and encase the butter completely. (If you have to stretch the dough, stretch it from all over; don't just pull the ends) you should now have a package that is 8" square.
To make great puff pastry, it is important to keep the dough cold at all times. There are specified times for chilling the dough, but if your room is warm, or you work slowly, or you find that for no particular reason the butter starts to ooze out of the pastry, cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate it . You can stop at any point in the process and continue at your convenience or when the dough is properly chilled.
Gently but firmly press the rolling pin against the top and bottom edges of the square (this will help keep it square). Then, keeping the work surface and the top of the dough well floured to prevent sticking, roll the dough into a rectangle that is three times as long as the square you started with, about 24" (don't worry about the width of the rectangle: if you get the 24", everything else will work itself out.) With this first roll, it is particularly important that the butter be rolled evenly along the length and width of the rectangle; check when you start rolling that the butter is moving along well, and roll a bit harder or more evenly, if necessary, to get a smooth, even dough-butter sandwich (use your arm-strength!).
With a pastry brush, brush off the excess flour from the top of the dough, and fold the rectangle up from the bottom and down from the top in thirds, like a business letter, brushing off the excess flour. You have completed one turn.
Rotate the dough so that the closed fold is to your left, like the spine of a book. Repeat the rolling and folding process, rolling the dough to a length of 24" and then folding it in thirds. This is the second turn.
If the dough is still cool and no butter is oozing out, you can give the dough another two turns now. If the condition of the dough is iffy, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes. Each time you refrigerate the dough, mark the number of turns you've completed by indenting the dough with your fingertips. It is best to refrigerate the dough for 30 to 60 minutes between each set of two turns.
The total number of turns needed is six. If you prefer, you can give the dough just four turns now, chill it overnight, and do the last two turns the next day. Puff pastry is extremely flexible in this regard. However, no matter how you arrange your schedule, you should plan to chill the dough for at least an hour before cutting or shaping it.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
I made this beautiful tray of Focaccia this evening. I just had to share it. Nothing smells better than fresh baked bread right out of the oven. I can't wait for my husband to get home from work. He will probably eat half of what you see here.
1 1/2 Tablespoons Active Dry Yeast or Instant Yeast
1 Tablespoon Sugar
2 Cups Warm Water (105 - 115 deg) If using instant yeast have water at about 70 degrees
16 1/2 Ounces Unbleached Bread Flour
1 Tablespoon Salt
6 - 8 ounces Unbleached All Purpose Flour
Can add garlic and herbs to the dough
1. Dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Let stand 10 minutes. If using instant yeast you can skip this procedure.
2. Add 16 1/2 Ounces Bread Flour and beat with paddle attachment for about 3 minutes or until smooth.
3. Switch to the dough hook and add unbleached flour 1/2 cup at a time until desired consistency. Dough should be slightly tacky.
4. Knead for 5 minutes or until proper gluten development. Do a window test.
5. Round dough and place in an oiled bowl, cover and let rise to double. 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
6. Punch dough down and allow to rise again, then punch down.
7. Oil a sheetpan with olive oil and place dough onto it stretching it to fit the sheetpan. Let it rest and stretch some more. When it is the size of the sheetpan brush with oil and put caramelized onions and any other toppings and let it rise a little, no more than 1/2 hour.
8. With your fingertips dimple the dough and spread with olive oil.
9. Bake at 450 degrees until bottom is nicely browned.
Toppings: Any combination of Caramelized Onion, Sundried Tomatoes, oregano leaves, chives, garlic, rosemary, sage, coarse salt, basil, olives, parsley, sauteed bell peppers, shallots, parmesan cheese etc.
Monday, August 31, 2009
This recipe is adapted from Pierre Herme's Chocolate Covered Crunchy Hazelnut Cookies from his book "Chocolate Desserts". They are really a cross between a cookie and a candy. My husband definitely thinks they are candy and he loves them. When you bake these cookies they spread a little. So I cut off the excess gave it a whirl in my food processor and sprinkled this on top of the cookies/candy after dipping them in tempered chocolate. They are really yummy and worth making.
1 Tablespoon Instant Espresso
1 Tablespoon Boiling Water
3 Large Egg Whites (room temperature)
400g Powdered Sugar (sifted)
400g Blanched Hazelnuts (toasted and coarsely chopped)
1. Dissolve the instant espresso into the water and set aside to cool.
2. Put all of the ingredients into a stainless steel bowl and set this over a pan of simmering water. Heat the batter, stirring until it reaches 138 degrees.
3. Pour into spacer bars 8" X 12". Batter should be about 1" thick. Cool to room temperature.
4. Cut the block of cooled batter into 3/4" squares and place them on parchment lined baking sheets about 2" apart.
5. Bake at 275 degrees in a convection oven for 18 - 22 minutes turning, half way through the baking time. When done the cookies should be golden, dry and uniformly dull. Remove from oven and cool to room temperature.
6. Dip the cookies in tempered chocolate and sprinkle a little of the *hazelnut dust on top of the chocolate. Put the cookies in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes to set the chocolate then store them at room temperature in an airtight container.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Sponge cake layers
6 Large Eggs, separated at room temperature
1 1/3 cups (162g) confectioner's (icing) sugar, divided 2/3 Cup & 2/3 Cup
1 teaspoon (5ml) vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (112g) sifted cake flour (SUBSTITUTE 95g plain flour + 17g cornflour (cornstarch) sifted together)
pinch of salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup (200g) caster (ultrafine or superfine white) sugar
4oz (110g) bakers chocolate or your favourite dark chocolate, finely chopped
2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons (250g) unsalted butter, at room temperature.
1 cup (200g) caster (superfine or ultrafine white) sugar
12 tablespoons (180 ml) water
8 teaspoons (40 ml) lemon juice
1 tablespoon neutral oil (e.g. grapeseed, rice bran, sunflowe
Directions for the sponge layers:
NB. The sponge layers can be prepared in advance and stored interleaved with parchment and well-wrapped in the fridge overnight.
1. Position the racks in the top and centre thirds of the oven and heat to 400F (200C).
2. Cut six pieces of parchment paper to fit the baking sheets. Using the bottom of a 9" (23cm) springform tin as a template and a dark pencil or a pen, trace a circle on each of the papers, and turn them over (the circle should be visible from the other side, so that the graphite or ink doesn't touch the cake batter.)
3. Beat the egg yolks, 2/3 cup (81g) of the confectioner's (icing) sugar, and the vanilla in a medium bowl with a mixer on high speed until the mixture is thick, pale yellow and forms a thick ribbon when the beaters are lifted a few inches above the batter, about 3 minutes. (You can do this step with a balloon whisk if you don't have a mixer.)
4. In another bowl, using clean beaters, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining 2/3 cup (81g) of confectioner's (icing)sugar until the whites form stiff, shiny peaks. Using a large rubber spatula, stir about 1/4 of the beaten whites into the egg yolk mixture, then fold in the remainder, leaving a few wisps of white visible. Combine the flour and salt. Sift half the flour over the eggs, and fold in; repeat with the remaining flour.
5. Line one of the baking sheets with a circle-marked paper. Using a small offset spatula, spread about 3/4cup of the batter in an even layer, filling in the traced circle on one baking sheet. Bake on the top rack for 5 minutes, until the cake springs back when pressed gently in the centre and the edges are lightly browned. While this cake bakes, repeat the process on the other baking sheet, placing it on the centre rack. When the first cake is done, move the second cake to the top rack. Invert the first cake onto a flat surface and carefully peel off the paper. Slide the cake layer back onto the paper and let stand until cool. Rinse the baking sheet under cold running water to cool, and dry it before lining with another parchment. Continue with the remaining papers and batter to make a total of six layers. Completely cool the layers. Using an 8" springform pan bottom or plate as a template, trim each cake layer into a neat round. (A small serrated knife is best for this task.)
Directions for the chocolate buttercream:
NB. This can be prepared in advance and kept chilled until required.
1. Prepare a double-boiler: quarter-fill a large saucepan with water and bring it to a boil.
2. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs with the sugar until pale and thickened, about five minutes. You can use a balloon whisk or electric hand mixer for this.
3. Fit bowl over the boiling water in the saucepan (water should not touch bowl) and lower the heat to a brisk simmer. Cook the egg mixture, whisking constantly, for 2-3 minutes until you see it starting to thicken a bit. Whisk in the finely chopped chocolate and cook, stirring, for a further 2-3 minutes.
4. Scrape the chocolate mixture into a medium bowl and leave to cool to room temperature. It should be quite thick and sticky in consistency.
5. When cool, beat in the soft butter, a small piece (about 2 tablespoons/30g) at a time. An electric hand mixer is great here, but it is possible to beat the butter in with a spatula if it is soft enough. You should end up with a thick, velvety chocolate buttercream. Chill while you make the caramel topping.
Lorraine's note: If you're in Winter just now your butter might not soften enough at room temperature, which leads to lumps forming in the buttercream. Male sure the butter is of a very soft texture I.e. running a knife through it will provide little resistance, before you try to beat it into the chocolate mixture. Also, if you beat the butter in while the chocolate mixture is hot you'll end up with more of a ganache than a buttercream!
Directions for the caramel topping:
1. Choose the best-looking cake layer for the caramel top. To make the caramel topping: Line a jellyroll pan with parchment paper and butter the paper. Place the reserved cake layer on the paper. Score the cake into 12 equal wedges. Lightly oil a thin, sharp knife and an offset metal spatula.
2. Stir the sugar, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over a medium heat, stirring often to dissolve the sugar. Once dissolved into a smooth syrup, turn the heat up to high and boil without stirring, swirling the pan by the handle occasionally and washing down any sugar crystals on the sides of the pan with a wet brush until the syrup has turned into an amber-coloured caramel.
3. The top layer is perhaps the hardest part of the whole cake so make sure you have a oiled, hot offset spatula ready. I also find it helps if the cake layer hasn't just been taken out of the refrigerator. I made mine ahead of time and the cake layer was cold and the toffee set very, very quickly—too quickly for me to spread it. Immediately pour all of the hot caramel over the cake layer. You will have some leftover most probably but more is better than less and you can always make nice toffee pattern using the extra to decorate. Using the offset spatula, quickly spread the caramel evenly to the edge of the cake layer. Let cool until beginning to set, about 30 seconds. Using the tip of the hot oiled knife (keep re-oiling this with a pastry brush between cutting), cut through the scored marks to divide the caramel layer into 12 equal wedges. Cool another minute or so, then use the edge of the knife to completely cut and separate the wedges using one firm slice movement (rather than rocking back and forth which may produce toffee strands). Cool completely.
Angela's note: I recommend cutting, rather than scoring, the cake layer into wedges before covering in caramel (reform them into a round). If you have an 8” silicon round form, then I highly recommend placing the wedges in that for easy removal later and it also ensures that the caramel stays on the cake layer. Once set, use a very sharp knife to separate the wedges.
1. Divide the buttercream into six equal parts.
2. Place a dab of chocolate buttercream on the middle of a 7 1/2” cardboard round and top with one cake layer. Spread the layer with one part of the chocolate icing. Repeat with 4 more cake layers. Spread the remaining icing on the sides of the cake.
3. Optional: press the finely chopped hazelnuts onto the sides of the cake.
4. Propping a hazelnut under each wedge so that it sits at an angle, arrange the wedges on top of the cake in a spoke pattern. If you have any leftover buttercream, you can pipe rosettes under each hazelnut or a large rosette in the centre of the cake. Refrigerate the cake under a cake dome until the icing is set, about 2 hours. Let slices come to room temperature for the best possible flavour
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
I really loved the Mallows (marshmallow cookies). My husband remembered them being called Pinwheels. I made them three times for different people and everyone was amazed that it was possible to make marshmallows. Don't be afraid, it is really easy. The glaze that goes over them is far more difficult to master. You must temper the chocolate first then add the oil or you will get bloom. The recipe did not state this and my first batch bloomed, tasted good but looked awful.
The Milano cookies are good they just don't look as nice as I would like, but they tasted great.
Here are the recipes:
Mallows(Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies)
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website
Prep Time: 10 min
Inactive Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Serves: about 2 dozen cookies
• 3 Cups (375grams/13.23oz) All Purpose Flour
• 1/2 Cup (112.5grams/3.97oz) White Sugar
• 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
• 3/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
• 3/8 Teaspoon Baking Soda
• 1/2 Teaspoon ground Cinnamon
• 12 Tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) Unsalted Butter
• 3 Eggs, whisked together
• Homemade marshmallows, recipe follows
• Chocolate glaze, recipe follows
1. In a mixer with the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients.
2. On low speed, add the butter and mix until sandy.
3. Add the eggs and mix until combine.
4. Form the dough into a disk, wrap with clingfilm or parchment and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
5. When ready to bake, grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
6. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
7. Roll out the dough to 1/8-inch thickness, on a lightly floured surface. Use a 1 to 1 1/2 inches cookie cutter to cut out small rounds of dough.
8. Transfer to the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool to room temperature.
9. Pipe a “kiss” of marshmallow onto each cookie. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.
10. Line a cookie sheet with parchment or silicon mat.
11. One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-topped cookies into the hot chocolate glaze.
12. Lift out with a fork and let excess chocolate drip back into the bowl.
13. Place on the prepared pan and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.
Note: if you don’t want to make your own marshmallows, you can cut a large marshmallow in half and place on the cookie base. Heat in a preheated 350-degree oven to slump the marshmallow slightly, it will expand and brown a little. Let cool, then proceed with the chocolate dipping.
• 1/4 Cup Water
• 1/4 Cup Light Corn Syrup
• 3/4 Cup (168.76 grams/5.95oz) Sugar
• 1 Tablespoon Powdered Gelatin (or 3 gelatin sheets softened in ice water, omitting the water in the recipe)
• 2 Tablespoons Cold Water
• 2 Egg Whites , room temperature
• 1/4 Teaspoon pure Vanilla Extract
1. In a saucepan, combine the water, corn syrup, and sugar, bring to a boil until “soft-ball” stage, or 235 degrees on a candy thermometer.
2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and let dissolve.
3. Remove the syrup from the heat, add the gelatin, and mix.
4. Whip the whites until soft peaks form and pour the syrup into the whites.
5. Add the vanilla and continue whipping until stiff.
6. Transfer to a pastry bag.
• 12 ounces semisweet chocolate• 2 ounces cocoa butter or vegetable oil
1. Melt the 2 ingredients together in the top of a double boiler or a bowl set over barely simmering water.
The above is how the recipe was written. I tempered the chocolate first then added the oil and they turned out beautiful.
Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 1 hr
Serves: about 3 dozen cookies
• 12 Tablespoons (170grams/ 6 oz) Unsalted Butter, softened
• 2 1/2 Cups (312.5 grams/ 11.02 oz) Powdered Sugar
• 7/8 Cup Egg Whites
• 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
• 2 Teaspoons Lemon Extract
• 1 1/2 Cups (187.5grams/ 6.61 oz) All Purpose Flour
• Cookie filling, recipe follows
• 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
• 8 Ounces Semisweet Chocolate, (chopped)
• Zest of 1 Orange
1. In a mixer with paddle attachment cream the butter and the sugar.
2. Add the egg whites gradually and then mix in the vanilla and lemon extracts.
3. Add the flour and mix until just well mixed.
4. With a small (1/4-inch) plain tip, pipe 1-inch sections of batter onto a parchment-lined sheet pan, spacing them 2 inches apart as they spread.
5. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Let cool on the pan.
6. While waiting for the cookies to cool, in a small saucepan over medium flame, scald cream.
7. Pour hot cream over chocolate in a bowl, whisk to melt chocolate, add zest and blend well.
8. Set aside to cool (the mixture will thicken as it cools).
9. Spread a thin amount of the filling onto the flat side of a cookie while the filling is still soft and press the flat side of a second cookie on top.
10. Repeat with the remainder of the cookies.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Thursday, July 09, 2009
Saturday, June 27, 2009
I chose to make tartlettes with my homemade Raspberry Rose Jam. These are great in the morning with coffee (don't ask me how I know), they are not too sweet and would make a nice hostess gift.
SWEET SHORTCRUST PASTRY
Prep time: 15-20 minutes
Resting time: 30 minutes (minimum)
Equipment needed: bowls, box grater, cling film
225g (8oz) All Purpose Flour
30g (1oz) Sugar
2.5ml (½ tsp) Salt
110g (4oz) Unsalted Butter, cold (frozen is better)
2 (2) Egg Yolks
2.5ml (½ tsp) Almond Extract (optional)
15-30ml (1-2 Tbsp) Cold Water
Sift together flour, sugar and salt. Grate butter into the flour mixture, using the large hole-side of a box grater. Using your finger tips only, and working very quickly, rub the fat into the flour until the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Set aside.
Lightly beat the egg yolks with the almond extract (if using) and quickly mix into the flour mixture. Keep mixing while dribbling in the water, only adding enough to form a cohesive and slightly sticky dough.
Form the dough into a disc, wrap in cling and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes
Prep time: 10-15 minutes
Equipment needed: bowls, hand mixer, rubber spatula
125g (4.5oz) Unsalted Butter, softened
125g (4.5oz) Powdered Sugar
3 (3) Eggs
2.5ml (½ tsp) Almond Extract
125g (4.5oz) Almond Flour (Trader Joes)
30g (1oz) All Purpose Flour
Cream butter and sugar together for about a minute or until the mixture is primrose in colour and very fluffy. Scrape down the side of the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. The batter may appear to curdle. In the words of Douglas Adams: Don’t panic. Really. It’ll be fine. After all three are in, pour in the almond extract and mix for about another 30 seconds and scrape down the sides again. With the beaters on, spoon in the almond flour and the flour. Mix well. The mixture will be soft, keep its slightly curdled look (mostly from the almonds) and retain its pallid yellow color.
RASPBERRY ROSE JAM
ASSEMBLING THE TARTLETTES
Place the chilled dough disc on a lightly floured surface. If it's overly cold, you will need to let it become acclimatised for about 15 minutes before you roll it out. Flour the rolling pin and roll the pastry to 5mm (1/4”) thickness, by rolling in one direction only (start from the centre and roll away from you), and turning the disc a quarter turn after each roll. When the pastry is to the desired size and thickness, cut out rounds with a biscuit cutter and place into the individual tartlette molds. Chill in the freezer for 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 200C/400F.
Remove tartlettes from the freezer, spread as even a layer as you can of Raspberry Rose Jam onto the pastry base. Top with frangipane, spreading to cover the entire surface of the tartlette. Smooth the top and pop into the oven for 15 minutes. Five minutes before the tart is done, the top will be poofy and brownish. Remove from oven and strew flaked almonds on top and return to the heat for the last five minutes of baking (optional).
The finished tart will have a golden crust and the frangipane will be tanned, poofy and a bit spongy-looking. Remove from the oven and cool on the counter. Serve warm, with crème fraîche, whipped cream or custard sauce if you wish.
When you slice into the tart, the almond paste will be firm, but slightly squidgy and the crust should be crisp but not tough.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
These cupcakes were red velvet with cream cheese frosting and they were delivered to the same party as this chocolate graduation cap.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Her parents told me later that some of the guests at the party thought it was a present and did not know it was a cake until they cut into it. Mission accomplished!!
The bottom tier was 8 layers of vanilla chiffon cake with grand marnier syrup, fillings were - raspberry rose jam, white chocolate ganache, raspberry buttercream, fresh raspberries, and vanilla buttercream. The top two tiers were chocolate cake with fillings of hazelnut crunch, ganache, chocolate buttercream & french silk mousse.
All tiers were covered in fondant and the pearls were made out of fondant and painted with pearl dust to shine them up and make them look real. The bow's on top were made out of gumpaste.
It was a fun cake to make!!
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
2 Tablespoons Myers Rum
1. Mix the rum and raisins in a bowl. Mix the cinnamon and sugar in another bowl.
2. Melt 1 1/2 Ounces of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the breadcrumbs and cook while stirring until golden and toasted. This will take about 3 minutes. Let it cool completely.
3. Put the rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Make the strudel dough as described below. Spread about 1 1/2 Ounces of the remaining melted butter over the dough using your hands (a bristle brush could tear the dough, you could use a special feather pastry brush instead of your hands). Sprinkle the buttered dough with the bread crumbs. Spread the walnuts about 3 inches from the short edge of the dough in a 6-inch-(15cm)-wide strip. Mix the apples with the raisins (including the rum), and the cinnamon sugar. Spread the mixture over the walnuts.
4. Fold the short end of the dough onto the filling. Lift the tablecloth at the short end of the dough so that the strudel rolls onto itself. Transfer the strudel to the prepared baking sheet by lifting it. Curve it into a horseshoe to fit. Tuck the ends under the strudel. Brush the top with the remaining melted butter.
5. Bake the strudel for about 30 minutes or until it is deep golden brown. Cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing. Use a serrated knife and serve either warm or at room temperature. It is best on the day it is baked.
1 1/3 cups (200 g) unbleached flour
1. Combine the flour and salt in a stand-mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix the water, oil and vinegar in a measuring cup. Add the water/oil mixture to the flour with the mixer on low speed. You will get a soft dough. Make sure it is not too dry, add a little more water if necessary.Take the dough out of the mixer. Change to the dough hook. Put the dough ball back in the mixer. Let the dough knead on medium until you get a soft dough ball with a somewhat rough surface.
2. Take the dough out of the mixer and continue kneading by hand on an unfloured work surface. Knead for about 2 minutes. Pick up the dough and throw it down hard onto your working surface occasionally.Shape the dough into a ball and transfer it to a plate. Oil the top of the dough ball lightly. Cover the ball tightly with plastic wrap. Allow to stand for 30-90 minutes (longer is better).
3. It would be best if you have a work area that you can walk around on all sides like a 36 inch (90 cm) round table or a work surface of 23 x 38 inches (60 x 100 cm). Cover your working area with table cloth, dust it with flour and rub it into the fabric. Put your dough ball in the middle and roll it out as much as you can.Pick the dough up by holding it by an edge. This way the weight of the dough and gravity can help stretching it as it hangs. Using the back of your hands to gently stretch and pull the dough. You can use your forearms to support it.
4. The dough will become too large to hold. Put it on your work surface. Leave the thicker edge of the dough to hang over the edge of the table. Place your hands underneath the dough and stretch and pull the dough thinner using the backs of your hands. Stretch and pull the dough until it's about 2 feet wide and 3 feet long, it will be tissue-thin by this time. Cut away the thick dough around the edges with scissors. The dough is now ready to be filled.
Tips- Ingredients are cheap so the daring bakers recommend making a double batch of the dough, that way you can practice the pulling and stretching of the dough with the first batch and if it doesn't come out like it should you can use the second batch to give it another try. The tablecloth can be cotton or polyster. Before pulling and stretching the dough, remove your jewelry from hands and wrists, and wear short-sleeves;- To make it easier to pull the dough, you can use your hip to secure the dough against the edge of the table;- Few small holes in the dough is not a problem as the dough will be rolled, making (most of) the holes invisible.