I’ve been away for two weeks – but I have not been inactive! :) I went to Austria to see my grandmother, who gave me a one-day Austrian Baking Heritage class. It was GREAT. We baked strudels all day long. In the picture above you can see our poppyseed strudel. This one’s been made with a yeast dough; but I also learned how to make proper strudel dough. The stretched kind. The kind that requires more hands and arms than anybody’s got and that always ends up with at least little holes in it. They say that proper strudel dough has to be stretched so thin that you if you put it on top of the page of a newspaper, you should still be able to read it.
Two rather unfortunate things though: I can’t give you any recipes because the quantities are a tad imprecise. – “Add as much XY as the dough needs, then bake at a good temperature until the colour is right.” I guess that’s the way grandmothers all over the world hand down their recipes. It’s a sort of rite of passage for the baking kind. As soon as your grandmother’s recipes make sense, you’re there. You’re it. :) I’m not quite it yet – I still struggle with some recipes – but I’m getting there! Er, sorry, there.
The other unfortunate thing is that the other pictures I took are rubbish, so you cannot see for yourselves that yes, my stretched strudel dough was thin enough to read a newspaper through it, and it was almost flawlessly hole-less too! From this dough we made an apple strudel and one apple-grape-almond strudel. Delicious!
… and something new
My nana is always up for trying out something new. I must get my adventurous-experimental baking spirit from her. So anyway, inspired by my friend, who in turn was inspired by all of these, we made cinnamon pull-apart bread. It tasted nice but I wasn’t really satisfied with the result. You couldn’t really pull away the slices; we ended up tearing off junks of it. Maybe we used too little butter? If I ever make one again, I might use a recipe.