While the rest of Dubai celebrates Bavarian food and culture at Oktoberfest parties, Penelope Walsh takes a taste of Germany home, with traditional dessert recipes devised by Dubai’s top German chefs.
Raspberry Berliner by chef Uwe Micheel
Chef Uwe Micheel comes from Celle in Northern Germany. He is director of kitchens at Radisson Blu Hotel Dubai Deira Creek. Here, he shares with us his recipe for German-style raspberry doughnuts.
1/4 cup (plus 3 tablespoons)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons dry milk
1 pinch of salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
Grated zest of 1 lemon
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
Vegetable oil, for frying
1 cup raspberry jam
1. Combine yeast and the three tablespoons of warm water in a bowl and leave for five to ten minutes until foamy.
2. In a bowl use an electric mixer to combine flour, sugar, dry milk, and salt on low speed.
3. Add the yeast mixture, eggs and lemon zest to the bowl. Mix on medium speed. Add 1/4 cup of warm water until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Knead for ten minutes.
4. While mixing, add the butter, one tablespoon at a time. Continue to add the rest of the butter until it is well incorporated.
5. Remove the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead into a ball. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and leave in a warm place for about one hour until doubled in size.
6. With your fist, knock down the dough and place on a lightly floured surface. Shape the dough into a rectangle, and place on a towel-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
7. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a 1/4-inch-thick disk. With a 3.5-inch cookie cutter, cut out the doughnuts. Roll the scraps into a ball and repeat the cutting process.
8. Place the baking sheet in a warm place, and let the dough rise for approximately one hour, until it has doubled in size.
9. Heat vegetable oil in a large stockpot until it reaches 160°C. Fry the doughnuts, several at a time, until golden brown, for two to three minutes each side.
10. Remove doughnuts from oil with a slotted spoon, and roll immediately in granulated sugar. Transfer doughnuts to paper towel-lined baking sheet.
11.Using a steel knife, poke a hole in the side of each doughnut. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a medium round tip, and fill doughnuts with jam. Serve warm, or store in airtight container at room temperature for up to one day.
Radisson Blu Hotel Dubai Deira Creek (04 205 7033).
Käse Sahne Torte by chef Alexander Stumpf
Chef Alexander Stumpf is from Thurigen, located in Eastern Germany. He is executive chef at Sass Café in DIFC. He shares his recipe for a classic German cheesecake.
For the cake
3/4 cup (1 and 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Zest of one lemon
For the filling
2 sheets of gelatin
2 lemons, zested
2 lemons, juiced
2 cups of low fat, unsalted
6 oz. cream cheese
2/3 cup of sugar
2 extra large eggs whites, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups heavy cream, straight from
½ cup of icing sugar
1. Prepare a ten inch cake tin, covering the bottom with a ten inch round of parchment paper. Then, take a mixing bowl and add in the flour and baking powder. Using an electric mixer, add the eggs, butter, 1/3 cup of sugar and beat until very light in colour. Add in the vanilla extract and lemon zest.
2. Next, pour the batter into the prepared spring form pan and bake it in a preheated oven, at 175°C and cook for 20-30 minutes. Remove and let it cool on|a rack. Once cooled, cut in half horizontally.
3. Take the 10-inch pan, and grease it with butter; then line it with wax paper. Place one half of the cake at the bottom of the mould.
4. To prepare the filling: dissolve the gelatin on the stove in six tablespoons of water, for five minutes.
5. In a food processor, mix together the cottage cheese and cream cheese, making sure that it is very smooth. After approximately ten minutes add the lemon juice and zest, then add the sugar. Now mix in the gelatin (ensuring it is still warm) and the vanilla extract. Continue mixing until very smooth.
6. Now, make the meringue mixture by beating egg whites and 1/3 cup of sugar until they form soft peaks.
7. Separately, whip the cream until it forms soft peaks. Add the icing sugar slowly and continue to do so until it forms soft peaks. Add vanilla extract to taste.
8. Return to the cheese mixture, and add the meringue, mixing in small portions at a time with a whisk until it is very smooth. It is important that the meringue is mixed into the cheese mixture first. Now, add the cream mixture. Take a small amount and mix it rapidly into the cheese-meringue mixture. Keep adding the cream, mixing quickly as you do so.
9. Next, pour all of the cheese-cream filling into the prepared pan. It should fill it to the top or a little higher than the rim of the ring. Place the second half of the cake on top of this.
10. Refrigerate the cake for at least four hours, or preferably overnight. Release the cake from the pan. Shake the ring a little to loosen and lift away from the cake. Peel off the wax paper. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve.
Sass Café, Al Fattan Currency House, DIFC (04 352 7722).
Apple strudel by chef Moritz Neumann
Chef Moritz Neumann from the Bavarian capital, Munich, is chef de cuisine at Scots American Grill. This is his recipe for classic apple strudel.
For the dough
300g all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
10ml white vinegar
For the filling
200ml apple juice
4 tablespoons corn starch
750g apples, peeled, cored and sliced
50g dark seedless raisins
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
30g sliced almonds
30ml melted butter
3 tablespoons fine, dried breadcrumbs
Icing sugar to garnish
Vanilla ice cream to serve
1. Mix all the dough ingredients together with a spoon. Then knead the dough by hand for several minutes until it is tacky, but not sticky.
2. Form the dough into a ball, brush with oil and leave to rest for an hour at room temperature.
3. Preheat the oven to 160°C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
4. In a small bowl, combine 20ml of the apple juice with the corn starch, mix until smooth and then set aside.
5. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook the apples with the remaining apple juice, raisins, sugar and cinnamon for about eight to ten minutes (until the apples are tender). Stir the corn starch slurry (it may have settled) and add it to the apple mixture, stirring constantly until smooth and lump free. Simmer for one minute more, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and cool. Stir in the almond slices, cover and chill.
6. Lay out the strudel dough as thin as you can on a clean, flat, lightly floured surface. Brush with some melted butter and sprinkle with one tablespoon of breadcrumbs. Spread the apple filling evenly onto the strudel dough surface, leaving a clean edge on all sides. Roll into a log, folding the edges at each end beneath the log and brush with some melted butter.
7. Carefully place the strudel on the prepared baking sheet, seam-side down. Bake the strudel until golden brown, for 15 to 18 minutes.
8. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 15 minutes before cutting into slices. Sprinkle with icing sugar just before serving. Serve with ice cream or vanilla sauce.
Scots American Grill, Dubai Marriott Hotel Al Jaddaf, Oud Metha Road, Al Jaddaf Area (04 317 7777).