Autumn Fruit Strudel
Phyllo (or filo) dough, best known for its use in Greek and Turkish pastries like baklava, is sold in the freezer section of large grocery stores. It is an elastic dough pulled into very thin sheets and cut into large rectangles. Follow the instructions on the box for thawing. When working with phyllo, keep the unused dough sheets stacked under a piece of plastic wrap or a barely damp kitchen towel until you are ready to use them; otherwise, they may become brittle and tear easily. Frozen phyllo dough keeps well but not indefinitely; it becomes dry or sticky if stored for too long.
- 12 sheets phyllo dough, thawed if frozen
- 8 Tbs. (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and
- 7 tsp. granulated sugar
- 3 or 4 tart apples, peeled, halved, cored and
diced (about 3 cups)
- 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 cup mixed chopped dried fruit, such as
sour cherries, apricots, cranberries, currants,
golden raisins or nectarines
Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Working with 1 phyllo sheet at a time and keeping the others covered with a barely damp kitchen towel to prevent them from drying out, place the first sheet on the parchment paper. Using a pastry brush, brush well with some of the melted butter. Lay a second phyllo on top of the first and brush again with butter. Sprinkle with 1 tsp. of the granulated sugar. Repeat, brushing every sheet with butter and sprinkling every other sheet with 1 tsp. granulated sugar, until all of the phyllo is used.
In a large bowl, toss together the apples, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and dried fruit. Arrange the apple filling along one long side of the phyllo stack, positioning it about 1 inch from the edge. Fold the edge of the stack over the filling, then carefully roll up the phyllo into a log with the seam side down. Brush the log with additional melted butter and sprinkle with the remaining 1 tsp. granulated sugar.
Bake the strudel until the phyllo is golden and the apples are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 45 to 55 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 30 minutes. Transfer the strudel to a long serving platter, cut crosswise and serve warm. Serves 8.