September is here and what a glorious month. There is so much fruit to be picked and one of my favorite this month has to be the apples. Walking around Charlecote I saw many different types of apples which always takes me back to childhood, picking apples from my grandfathers tree and then my mother and grandmother making Kolache.
Kolache is great as apart from tasting delicious, it is another Czech dish that uses fruit which is in season, very much like Bublanina which I will share with you at a later date. Another of my favourite family puddings. Looking at all the apples on the trees and the weather not being it's best, it just had to be a baking day. Kolache is made in many Countries across Europe with all sorts of fillings, in all shapes and sizes, You can make it as a large flan or an individual portions, the choice is yours and the fillings are endless.
I thought I would share with you the basic recipe and leave the experimenting to you but I will give you a few ideas for other fillings at the end of this blog. Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my family have for generations.
You will need....
For the base..
400g of plain flour (fine or medium)
20g of fresh yeast (take out of fridge 20-30 minutes before using)
2 egg yolks
50g of caster sugar
250ml lukewarm milk
60g of melted butter cooled a little
A pinch of salt
A drop or two of Tuzemsky (Optional) For more about Tuzemsky see notes at the bottom of this page.
For the filling....
5 good sized cooking apples or about 8 eating apples. (Any apples can be used, cooking, eating or a mix of both )
40g of butter
4 tablespoons of caster sugar
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1/2 grated nutmeg
Juice from half a lemon
For the topping....
100g of fine or medium plain flour.
80g of caster sugar
60g of softened butter
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon.
1 egg yolk for brushing dough.
Now all you have to do is invite some family or friends around to help you eat it :)
Afternoon tea anyone?
My children love Apple and Plum Kolache served hot with custard or ice-cream. The English touch :)
The fillings for kolache are endless as you can see in the photo below.
Another popular filling is vanilla cream cheese and poppy seeds.
To make the vanilla cream cheese filling you will need:
2 tablespoons of caster sugar, 1 tablespoon of vanilla sugar, 2 tablespoons of milk or cream. 40g of melted butter cooled, 1 egg yolk, 250g of philadelphia cheese (other soft cheeses work well too).
Mix all ingredients together in a blender until smooth. Place in the fridge for an hour for the flavours to settle.
To make the poppy seed filling, you will need:
100g of ground poppy seeds, 2 tablespoons of butter, 100ml of milk, 2 tablespoons of caster sugar, 1 tablespoon of honey, 1 tablespoon of cinnamon, ground star of anise, small amount of ground cloves and a little Tuzemsky (Rum can be used instead in this recipe)
Into a small saucepan add the milk, butter, honey and spices, heat gently for a few minutes until the butter is melted and the milk is hot but do not boil. Pour the mix over the ground poppy seeds and mix well. Add the Tuzemsky and mix again then leave to cool. Decorate with almonds and sultanas.
Both these mixes can be made the day before and stored in the fridge, ready to use when you are ready. I often make them the day before I intend to make kolache.
Again the size is up to you, you can make large ones to slice or individual ones.
In the Czech Republic, very small kolache are made for weddings. One of the favourite fillings for these is strawberry and cream. It is delicious and this filling can be used for the slightly larger individual kolache too.
This is how to make the strawberry and cream filling:
You will need: A small pot of cream cheese, philadelphia cheese works well for this, around 230g (8oz) pot. I egg yolk, 450g of fresh strawberries, 55g of caster or vanilla sugar. If you don't have vanilla sugar use a little vanilla essence. Chop strawberries into small pieces and set aside . Place all other ingredients into a bowl and mix with a wooden spoon. Add the chopped strawberries then mix again. Leave to stand for 2-3 hours in a fridge, Can be made the night before.
FOR A GLUTEN FREE FRUIT KOLACHE
You can use a sponge mix using 250g Gluten free SR flour, 200g of butter or margarine , 200g of caster sugar, 3 eggs, a few drops of vanilla essence.
Mix all ingredients together until smooth. Spread the mixture evenly over a greased baking dish or tin with sides. Place the fruit mix on top, leaving a cm or two around the edges which will make a nice crust and make it easier to hold.
To make the crumble topping you will need: 80g of GF plain flour, 80g of sugar, 60g of butter and 20g of GF breadcrumbs. A sprinkle of cinnamon.
Add all the ingredients except for the breadcrumbs into a bowl, rub together into a crumble mix then add the breadcrumbs and mix and sprinkle on top.
FRESH YEAST can be bought from most supermarkets, just ask at the bread counter and they will give you what you need for a small amount. I normally pay around 20-30p depending on where I buy it.
FLOUR In English shops you normally get two types of non self raising flours. Plain or bread flour but in European shops you can get a medium flour which is somewhere in between both of them. I like to use the medium flour for sweet dough and pastry dishes as it is what I am used to but fine plain flour works just as well.
TUZEMSKY is known as a Czech/Slovak domestic rum but these days it is not allowed to be called rum as it is brewed very differently and to be honest, tastes different too. It smells like rum and raisin when you open it. It is something that I have in my kitchen all the time as it is the secret ingredient in so many of my sweet dishes. A few drops can make a lovely cake into a very special cake and you would never know what it was just by tasting the finished product. I normally buy my Tuzemsky on-line but you can find it in local European/Continental shops too. This is an extra ingredient, lovely to use but the dish will still be very nice without it.
I hope you enjoyed this recipe, I thought it would be nice to do something different and with all the apples on the trees and blackberries on the bushes it is a very good time to make kolache.
Copyright Jana Eastwood