This recipe I learned it from my mother. She used to make in the winter season. My father was a fan of her “southern” pies and desserts, since she was born in the “Lakes Region”, a southern zone of Chile, she knows tons of traditional recipes from there.
Later, when I was vegetarian, I found “Sister Bernarda’s secrets” (a very popular Argentinian nun who had a cooking show in the cable TV) to make the dough. She makes it beating the dough against the counter, which looks very funny but it really works to make an elastic and forgiving dough that will stretch a lot. Their recipes aren’t vegan, so it was my first attempt to make it without animal products. And it was a success!
Indeed the original dough recipe from my admired “Sister Bernarda” calls for 1 egg, and in my first attempt I decided to just omit it, when she said: “The egg will helps to harden the dough…” And in my opinion it is not necessary, since the dough it is so thin. Also leaving the egg out do not have any impact on the flavor, so it was really easy to make it vegan.
And this how I did to make it vegan:
Vegan Apple Strudel with Walnuts
250 gr all purpose flour (1 cup)
1/4 Tsp Salt
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
about 1/4 cup warm water
4 medium red apples
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 dried risings
1 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
Making the dough:
- In a bowl mix the flour and salt.
- Make a wheel and add the oil and a 3 Tbsp of water and start mixing with your hands. Keep adding water until its forms a soft ball of dough which it must be very soft in order to get super elastic.
- Once the dough is formed take it to a flat and clean surface. With floured hands start beating it against your surface for about 2 to 3 minutes.
- You will know that your dough is ready when you see some elongation after you throw it against the counter.
- Place your dough in a warm place covered from the air. Let it rest for about 15 minutes, or the time you’ll spend prepping the filling.
- Peel and finely slice the apples in half moons, and place them in a bowl.
- Add the sugar and cinnamon. If you want you can add other spices of your choice. I like it simple.
- Preheat the oven at 350 F.
- With the help of a rolling pin and in a floured flat surface, roll the dough to a square shape of 1/4 inch of thickness. Do not knead because it will be hard to stretch.
- Place a kitchen towel over your counter and using the back of your hands start to expand the dough , moving the dough as a fabric. Do not stretch it, only allow the dough gets more thin by its own weigh, the idea is using the gravity’s help on stretching the dough without rolling. In that way you’ll not make any holes on it.
- Once the dough gets the desired dimension, lay it over the towel and pour the apple mixture over, spreading the pieces evenly.
- Add walnut and risings on top.
- To close it use the edges of your towel: From a large side of your rectangle, pick one end in each hand and fold it over, at least 2 times, forming a log shape. Once is all folded, pinch all over the edges to close the dough.
- Carefully and with the help of your towel, place the strudel over a baking tray lined with parchment paper. You can paint a coat over your strudel with agave or maple syrup to make it shine and more golden brown at the end.
- Bring to a preheat oven at 350 for about 40 minutes. After is baked, let it cool or, much better, let it rest over night.
I know all the process of throwing the dough and stretching it sounds a little bit difficult, but I tell you, it is easy! you only have to be cautious do not making holes, and if you accidentally make one, just pinch it and it will be fixed.
At over all this dessert is so inexpensive, and delicious that I’m in love with it, I make it all the time to have along with a tea in this colds afternoons. I just love it! Hope you’ll give it a try!!!