A special cake: szarlotka. With lots of tart apples, cooked till mushy with just lemon and cinnamon. And wrapped in a big amount of a buttery, slightly salty dough with a nutty scent (—> brown butter is an answer of course).
Favorite Szarlotka: Polish Apple Pie
23 cm (9-inch) springform pan
3 ½ pounds (1 ½ kg) tart apples, for example, Golden Delicious or Granny Smith, peeled and cored
2 tablespoons butter
1 lemon zest
1 teaspoon cinnamon
sugar, if desired
3 cups (400 g) all-purpose flour
¾ cup (150 g) sugar
1 teaspoon salt
300 g butter (2 ⅔ sticks)
vanilla ice creams
1. Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a big pot. Add the zest of lime and cinnamon, Cook, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the apples; cook 30 – 40 minutes, until mushy but with chunks. Transfer to a bowl and let chill to room temperature.
2. Combine the flour with sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Butter a 24 cm (9 inches) springform pan. Line with baking paper.
3. Cook the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, until it foams, then browns, 5–8 minutes. Whisk the burnt butter into the flour mixture and mix until well combined. Chill in a fridge for 20 minutes until set a bit. Wrap half of the dough in a plastic bag and put it in a freezer. Press the second half into the bottom and up the sides (2 cm) of the springform pan. You may cover the dough with a bit of flour. Chill in a fridge for the next 20 minutes, until set. Preheat the oven to 180 C (350 F).
4. Transfer the cooked apples to the crust. Sprinkle the remain half evenly over the apples. Bake the cake until the streusel topping is crisp and golden, about 60 minutes. Let cool completely before serving.
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