Heidi gave me this recipe back around 1975. We were in a graduate German class in which everyone took turns bringing a snack for the coffee break, for which Heidi brought in her Apfelkuchen. Heidi was from Germany and she told us that it was one of her grandmother's old recipes. Therefore, I feel justified to tell people that this recipe is echt deutsch, "a genuine German recipe."
It immediately became my standard pot-luck dessert dish and has become a family recipe. Whenever I would bake some, I had to always make an extra one to ransom the others from the boys. Even now that my son is an adult and is becoming a great amateur chef, he doesn't like to bake (requires too much precision in measurement so that there's just enough wet ingredients with the dry) and still looks forward to my baking this Kuchen.
Total Time: 1 hour
1 cup Sugar 1 Tbs. Butter 2 Eggs 1½ cups Flour 1 tsp. Baking Powder 1 pinch SaltFilling:
1 or 2 Apples Cinnamon SugarTopping:
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Prepare the filling:
- Peel and slice the apples.
- Coat the slices with cinnamon sugar.
- Prepare the dough:
- In a mixing bowl, work the butter and sugar together.
- Beat in the eggs.
- Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt together well. Add gradually to other mixture to form the dough.
- Divide dough in 2 parts. With wet hands, spread the one part in the bottom of a buttered pie tin. Apply a layer of the filling. Pat the other part of dough on top.
My own practices:
In applying the bottom layer of dough to the pie tin, I take half the dough in one hand, knead it slightly with both hands liberally wet to work a little water into the dough, then pat it between both hands to form a disk shape. I plant the disk of dough in the center of the pie tin and then spread it out to cover the entire bottom. I do the same with the other half of the dough, spreading it out to cover the filling. Even if the top layer seems to just barely cover the filling -- eg, you can still see some corners of apple sticking through -- , the dough will rise during baking and it will completely cover the filling.
Don't be afraid to apply a thick layer of filling. It will bake down and become much thinner. I normally use two large apples, one Granny Smith and the other a sweet variety, and end up with about half an apple's worth of cinnamon apple slices left over to snack on while the Kuchen is baking.
- Sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on top of the Kuchen.
- Bake for 45 min. at 350°. Test the center for being done using a bamboo skewer or something similar. If it doesn't come out clean, then bake for an additional 5 minutes until it does.
- When the Kuchen has cooled, transfer it to a serving plate.
- The dough is very thick and sticky, so I recommend that you remove all rings before the dough does it for you.
- You cannot handle the dough with dry hands, so keep your hands liberally wet. Rewet them often. I normally work next to the sink and keep the faucet running. Don't worry about the extra water; it will all bake out and it even seems to help a bit.
- The original recipe, given above, calls for apple slices with cinnamon sugar to sugar the apple slices and to top the Kuchen. You can try other fruit fillings, such as bananas or strawberries, using the appropriate spices instead of cinnamon.
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First uploaded on 2000 July 02.
Last updated on 2014 January 02.