Do you like apples? Personaly, I love them and because I have a huge lot of them I just had to use them because they're so delicious. The first idea was apple strudel, then apple pie and then, well, what about something new? Oh, yes, how about a sheet cake?
This sheet cake is made from a very thin layer of yeast dough (or acording to the consistency - batter) and lots and lots of three different types of filling. One is with poppy seeds and milk, the second is with apples, of course, and the last one is traditional quark cheese filling. All these types of fillings are quite typical for Czech's taste buds but usually not in one cake :) Anyway, it's very tasty and quite easy to do and if cut into small squares it could be a great idea for a small tasty snack!
As for the apples, it doesn't matter what kind you choose to use but the sweeter and softer the better.
135g all-purpose flour, sifted + more
120g caster sugar
20g fresh yeast
65ml milk, lukewarm
100g butter, softened + more
1 tsp grated lemon zest
500g apples, peeled and cores removed
1 tsp cinnamon
caster sugar (depends on your taste)
Poppy Seed Filling:
200g ground poppy seeds
60g caster sugar (can be more)
1 tsp butter
250g soft quark cheese
60g caster sugar
50g all-purpose flour
Batter: At first you have to make the leaven - mix fresh yeast with 1 tsp sugar, 2 tsp flour and milk together using a spoon. Set aside in a warm place (about 30C) for about 15 minutes (it has to get foamy and be doubled in size). In another bowl mix the rest of flour and lemon zest. Then add eggs, the rest of sugar, butter and the leaven and mix with wooden spoon until incorporated and smooth. The texture should be "pancake-y" (do not add any additional flour - it'll become doughy during baking). Sprinkle the batter with flour, cover with tea towel and place into a warm place (about 30C) and let raise for about 30 minutes (or until doubled in size). Spread evenly onto a greased and floured sheet pan (aprox. 40x30cm). Now using a tablespoon put the fillings on the batter - start with 1 tbsp of poppy seed filling, then 1 tbsp of quark cheese filling and then 1 tbsp of apple filling and then againg poppy seed filling and so on until the whole batter is covored. It might seem that the amount of all fillings is huge, but don't worry, it'll turn out great (don't let any leftover of fillings - use it all). Sprinkle with crumble and place into NOT preheated oven. Bake to 190C until the batter is golden and tooth pick comes out clean.
Apple Filling: Place halved apples in a saucepan and add water (so the apples are completely "covered" in water). Let boil 2 1/2 minutes covered. Reduce heat and let simmer until soft (about 3 - 4 minutes). Remove from heat, add sugar and cinnamon and mix well (the consistency should be puree-like).
Poppy Seed Filling: Mix ground poppy seeds with milk in a saucepan and bring to boil. Stir constantly until milk incorporates into poppy seeds and the mixture is thick. Remove from heat and stir in sugar and butter. Let cool.
Quark Cheese Filling: In a bowl mix together quark, eggs and sugar.
Crumble: Using your hands, combine all ingredients until small lumps form.
Although it seems to be pretty simple and boring, it's really pretty good becuase there's not much of a dough and there's a plenty of filling. My favourite one is the apple filling - so soft and moist, but the others are very tasty, too! It's better to make the fillings a little bit sweeter because after being baked it's less sweet than before. Oh and next week you're going to find out what this month's DB challange is (or was?)!