Monday, May 4, 2009

Apple-'Cream Cheese' Strudel

Try this delicious and easy dessert using the vegan phyllo dough from Fillo Factory, which is the right size for this recipe (18x13-inch sheets).

Melt a teaspoon of vegan butter (such as Earth Balance) in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 and 1/4 cups peeled and thinly sliced Rome apple and 1 and 1/4 cups peeled and thinly sliced Granny Smith apple; saute 3 minutes, then reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add 2 tablespoons organic brown sugar, 3 tablespoons thawed apple juice concentrate, 1/8 tsp. cinnamon and 1/8 tsp. nutmeg; cook for 3 minutes, then remove from heat. Stir in 1 and 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts and let cool.

For the apple juice concentrate, try the one from Columbia River Organics - there is no added sugar or corn syrup, as in other brands.

While the apple mixture cools, place 1/2 cup softened vegan cream cheese (such as Tofutti's Better Than Cream Cheese), 2 tablespoons raw sugar, 2 tablespoons vegan sour cream (I also used Tofutti's version here), and 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour. Beat with a mixer until smooth. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, a dash of salt and the equivalent of one egg using egg replacer (such as Ener-G), and beat until combined.

Working on a flat surface, place 1 sheet of phyllo down and lightly coat with cooking spray. Repeat with 5 more layers of phyllo, coating with cooking spray between each, then press down slightly to seal them together. Coat the top sheet of phyllo with cooking spray, then spoon the apple mixture along one short edge of the phyllo, leaving a 2-inch border on three sides (it will only spread over about 1/3 of the phyllo, length-wise). Drizzle the 'cream cheese' mixture over the apple mixture. Fold the long ends of phyllo up over the edge of the apple mixture, to tuck it in. Starting from your short edge with the 2-inch border, roll the phyllo up jelly-roll style, but not tightly or the phyllo might rip. Place the strudel, seam-side down, on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.

I hope those instructions make sense! It makes pretty intuitive sense when you do it, but I wish I had taken a picture mid-recipe to give you a visual.

Sprinkle with a dash of nutmeg, then bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack, before slicing into 6 equal portions - a serrated knife works best. Each piece is 220 calories. Although this is a great dessert, it also makes a pastry-like breakfast if you have leftovers!

You could also sprinkle the top of the roll with 1 tablespoon powdered sugar if you like, before slicing, although I did not.

Rome apple $1.23
Granny Smith apple $0.96
apple juice concentrate $4.19
vegan cream cheese $2.50
phyllo dough $4.39

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The Vegan Pantry

  • Vegan yogurt - Whole Soy
  • Vegan milk - Silk
  • Vegan Feta - Sunergia
  • Vegan Cheese - Galaxy Foods
  • Vegan Eggs - Ener-G
  • Vegan Butter - Earth Balance