Thursday, October 17, 2013

Dutch apple turnovers - Appelflappen

It’s cold outside these days, with rain that at times seems to go on forever.

It’s been dark, gloomy and for the most part, I enjoy it. I needed a change of seasons somehow, put on my woolen socks, stay in with a good book, turn on the oven and bake.

I’m baking quite a lot these days, whenever I can scare up some free time that is, because I’ve been pretty busy with work. One of the things I made was these Dutch pastries. When it comes to pastries, let me tell you, the Dutch are good. A testament to that is the Appeltaart (Dutch apple pie) but these puff pastry beauties are equally delicious.

These are the Dutch appelflappen (singular: appelflap) aka apple turnovers and they are little baked triangles of crisp puff pastry filled with grated apples, dark brown sugar and warming spices. They are traditionally drenched in icing sugar, the Dutch love their icing sugar on pastries, but they’re even more scrumptious when paired with a chantilly cream spiked with whiskey.

Apples, spices and single malt; it’s a match made in heaven, guaranteed to warm you up on a chilly autumn day.

Appelflappen (Dutch Apple Turnovers) with Whiskey Chantilly Cream

Apple season is here and you can take your pick with the apples you could use. I chose Goudrenet (a Dutch variety) but Granny Smith or any other type of good tart apple will do.
You can make these with homemade puff pastry or store-bought. Just make sure it is made with butter. It makes a difference.

Yield: 8 appelflappen


for the appelflappen
350 g (2 large) tart apples (Goudrenet or Granny Smith)
2 tablespoons soft dark brown sugar
¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of grated nutmeg
1 sheet ready-made puff pastry (40 x 24 cm), defrosted

1 small egg, lightly beaten, for glazing the pastries
Icing sugar and cinnamon, for sprinkling over the pastries

for the whiskey cream
250 ml cream, full-fat (35%)
2 tablespoons caster sugar
2 tablespoons single malt whiskey

Special equipment: box grater, baking sheet, baking paper, pastry brush, stand or hand-held electric mixer


for the appelflappen
Peel the apples and grate them coarsely into a bowl. Add the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix well with a spoon.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius / 290 Fahrenheit.
Line a large baking sheet with baking paper.

Lay the puff pastry on a piece of baking paper and cut it into 8 equal squares, trimming off any excess pastry. Place about 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of each square, fold it over to create a triangle and press edges together with a fork to seal. Transfer pastries onto the prepared baking sheet, brush them with the beaten egg and prick the tops with a fork.
Bake for about 20 minutes on the middle rack of the oven until golden-brown and puffed.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.

Serve sprinkled with some icing sugar and cinnamon, and a dollop of whiskey chantilly cream on the side.

Note: If you have any of the apple mixture leftover, don’t throw it away. It is delicious served on top of some thick Greek yoghurt. Even the syrup that will accumulate at the bottom of the bowl with the grated apples, sugar and spices is wonderful to drink as a liqueur of sorts.

for the whiskey cream
In the bowl of a stand mixer (or in a large bowl and using a hand-held mixer), beat the cream and sugar with the whisk attachment on high speed until soft peaks form. Add the whiskey and beat until stiff peaks form.
Keep chantilly cream refrigerated until ready to use.


  1. The Dutch really have a way with sweet things. These look delicious similar to what we call apple turnovers in Australia

  2. This looks wonderful, Magda! It takes me back to my childhood. In the US we also call them apple turnovers, and here in Switzerland we have apple strudel which is constructed differently but not all that different in concept. Don't you love how recipes cross cultures?!

  3. Sooooo simple! I love the idea of grated apples. I think I'll use this as an inspiration for an apple pie :)

  4. This is my absolute favorite thing to eat when we are in Amsterdam visiting family. In fact, Wouter is there now and this makes me wistful for some Dutch pastries. You are so right about their expertise when it comes to all things with flakey crust.

  5. A homemade apple turnover is heaven. Pure heaven. I had never heard of grating the apples, but it makes perfect sense! ~ David

  6. I love these - we make them with Koekkruiden though - adds a different type of flavour to nutmeg and cinnamon although they are, of course, the main ingredients

  7. Thanks all! I'm glad you like them!

  8. delicious little triangles. like David, I have never grated the apples, which I must try.

  9. Magda, I've been wanting to cozy up and do some baking too... Strangely this time of year in Berkeley is one of the hottest. I keep craving a cooler fall - that change of season you talk about - but it has yet to come. Seeing your delicious apple turnovers made me feel like I got a little taste of the season to come. xoxoxo E

  10. Delicious Magda! We'll be heading north soon, so will be prepared to find my woolen socks. Hopefully I'll find something equally as delicious as your apple turnovers to combat the cold ; )

  11. Keep the baked posts coming! I love the boozy chantilly (which is what EVERYONE should call whipped cream, so much more elegant).