Austrian 'Topfenstrudel'

Inspired by my travel, I bring you my version of the Austrian Topfenstrudel. OK, so imagine that: all around you are white snow-topped hills and dark green fir trees. You sit in front of a wooden alpine hut, snugly packed into a warm blanket and a woman in a dirndl dress brings you hot cocoa and a ‘Strudel’ swimming in sweet vanilla sauce. Sounds a like an ideal dream of a ski vacation? I swear it was exactly like that. Well, except maybe the ongoing après-ski hits in your ear. (My absolute favorite goes something like that: “She had quite an impressive bosom”) But after you slipped some cognac in your cocoa, from the pocket flask you are carrying around, you just sing right along! So here I bring Austria to your kitchen! 


500g low-fat curd cheese
250g normal curd cheese (20% fat)
2 tbsp. breadcrumbs, finely ground
100g sugar
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 egg
1 Orange (organic)
100g raisins
a package
of ready-made puff pastry

First of all, yes, I am using ready-made pastry here. I just came back from vacation, for Pete’s sake, forgive! There is no harm in saving work and time sometimes. Where you cannot save time and work is in the preparation of the curd cheese. Place it into a clean and rather thin kitchen towel over bowl and press at least a 120ml liquid out of your curd cheese baby. Wonderful messy work, I promise. Zest your organic and clean orange and rub it in the sugar. Now juice your orange and bring the raisins to a boil in half of the juice (just take the rest as a vitamin C shot). Take of the heat.  

Whisk the curd cheese, sugar, oil, breadcrumbs, vanilla and egg together with an electric mixer. Now fold in two thirds of the raisins, leaving the juice in the pan. Fill the puff pastry with the curd cheese mixture, fold it into a longish square, pinch together and carve it a few times. Brush on egg-wash. Bake at a 175°C for about 35 min. 

Serve with the rest of the raisins  and serve in warm vanilla sauce – store bought or homemade, whatever suits you! Either way, I really recommend boozed up cocoa with it!

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