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The Art of Making Strudel from Scratch

Stretching the dough until it’s tissue-thin makes a light, flaky pastry

Fine Cooking Issue 11
Photos: Ellen Silverman
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You could cheat and use prepared phyllo dough to make strudel, but it’s much more fun to make the Real Thing. This master class will show you, step by step, how to make strudel dough and  then how to stretch it so thin that you can read a newspaper through it. (This is not an exaggeration, and there’s a photograph to prove it). Making the dough itself, whether by hand or with a mixer, is relatively easy and is explained fully. But the most important part of the class is the imparting of his stretching technique, which is done in both words and photographs. It begins with the invaluable advice to remove all rings, bracelets, and watches, lest they damage the delicate dough during stretching. The later stages–trimming, brushing with butter, adding filling, rolling, presentation, and baking–are thoroughly covered. Gormley conveys all sorts of useful information along the way: what kind of flour to use, how to repair holes in the dough, how large the fully stretched dough should be, and what you should be doing while the dough is resting. A series of ten numbered photographs illustrates the process from start to finish. Recipes include: Strudel Dough; Mushroom & Spinach Filling; Cranberry Filling; and Apple Filling.


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