100g unsalted butter, melted plus extra for coating pastry sheets
50g icing sugar, for decoration
To make the dough
Combine all dough ingredients in a mixing bowl and work with your hands until a ball forms. Knead on a clean, floured surface for 6-7 minutes, until you have a soft, but smooth and elastic dough. This can also be made in a stand mixer, with a dough hook.
Shape dough into a ball, coat with 1 teaspoon of oil, and put on a plate. Cover with a clean tea towel and let dough rest in a warm place for 1 hour.
To make the filling
In the meantime, prepare the strudel filling by melting the butter in a pan, adding the breadcrumbs and roasting until golden brown. Peel, core and quarter the apples, then cut each quarter into thin slices. Toss them with lemon juice, the sugar and spice, then add the sultanas, almonds (optional) and the apple juice. Lastly, add the breadcrumbs.
Preheat oven to 190°C. Cover a baking tray with baking paper and melt the extra butter.
On a kitchen bench, well dusted with flour, roll out the dough into a rectangular shape. Using the backs of your hands (to prevent the dough from tearing), stretch the dough into a larger rectangle until it is very thin. Brush the rolled and stretched dough with melted butter.
With the wider side of the pastry facing you, carefully distribute the apple filling close to the edge, roughly about a third into the dough. Make sure the edge is well buttered, then roll up the pastry into a fat log, away from you, keeping the filling in place as you roll and folding the edge in to seal it inside. Slide it onto the baking tray. Brush the outside of the pastry with melted butter and bake for 30 minutes, until it is crisp and golden.
Dust with icing sugar when cooled down or serve, still warm, with your favourite ice cream or cream.
A good alternative to using homemade strudel dough is store-bought chilled or frozen filo pastry. Cooking time will vary depending on whether store bought pastry is used or if making your own.