Apfelstrudel – Apple strudel (Austrian)


Cooked for the Austrian entry in the Euro Cup and Plate challenge.

6 sheets of of filo pastry
3 apples
50g organic butter, plus some for pastry
50g breadcrumbs
100g sugar
handful of raisins
pinch of cinnamon powder

  1. Peel the apples and and cut them thinly. Fry the breadcrumbs in butter. Spread the filo pastry out, and carefully brush some melted butter between each layer. Cover half the dough with the apple slices, add the breadcrumb mixture, sugar, raisins and sprinkle with cinnamon. Roll the strudel up very carefully.
  2. Grease a baking pan, and place the strudel on top. Bake in a preheated oven at 200°C for 20 minutes.

Too easy and absolutely delicious!

Serves 6.

Rhubarb and custard trifle recipe


Rhubarb, rhubarb, rhubarb.

It’s what a crowd of extras will say when they are trying to create a general hubbub on stage. Why rhubarb you might ask? I’ve no idea, but at least it’s easy to remember, and, as it is in season, a perfect complement to this easy vanilla infused custard trifle. 

Rhubarb and Custard Trifle

Adapted from ‘The River Cottage Year by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.

400g rhubarb
100ml orange juice
4 tablespoons of sugar + 100g sugar
400ml whole milk
vanilla pod
4 large egg yolks
plain sponge cake

  1. Wash, trim and cut into 3cm lengths about 400g rhubarb. Put in a pan with the orange juice and 4 tablespoons of sugar. Bring to a simmer and cook gently for about 5 minutes or until the stalks are tender but still hold their shape. Taste the rhubarb – it should be tart, as the sponge and trifle will sweeten the trifle. But if it is unpalatably sour, add a little more sugar. Strain off about 200ml of the juice. Transfer the remaining rhubarb to a non-metallic dish. Chill both the juice and rhubarb in the fridge.
  2. Make custard. Put the whole milk in a pan with a split vanilla pod and scald until almost boiling. Beat the egg yolks with 100g sugar and whisk in the hot cream. Return the custard to the pan over a very low heat and stir constantly until it thickens, making a glossy coat on the back of the spoon. Remove the vanilla pod, and scrape off the tiny black specks into the mixture. Remove from heat and strain through a sieve into a bowl and chill. When cold it should be spoonably thick rather than pourable.
  3. Take (or make) a simple plain sponge cake. Break it into chunks and press lightly into 4 large wine glasses or dessert dishes. Pour in enough of the chilled rhubarb juice to soak the sponge thoroughly. Then top with a layer of the stewed rhubarb. Now pile in a generous layer of the chilled, thickened custard. Enjoy.

Serves 4.

VARIATION – You could, of course, cheat and buy store-bought custard, but just this once try making it from scratch and you may never turn back. Use only fresh free-range eggs.