Tortta von Epffel

This apple-and-cheese pie comes from a 16th C. German cookbook.

While apples and cheese are a classic snack pairing, their combination in this pie is pleasantly surprising.

Period Source

Das Kuchbuch der Sabina Welserin,, Sabina Welserin, c. 1553:

Ain tortta von epffel zú machen Nempt epffel, schelts vnnd stosts ain ribeissen, darnach rests jm schmaltz. Dan thiet daran soúil geriben kesß als epfel, ain wenig gestossen negelen, ain wenig jmber vnnd zimerrerlach, zway air, riert es woll dúrchainander, dan mach den taig wie zú ainem fladen, thút ain knepflin schmaltz darein, damit es sý nit anlaff, vnnd vnnden vnnd oben ain wenig glút, lasß gemach bachen.

Translation by T. Gloning:

To make an apple tart. Take apples, peel them and grate them with a grater, afterwards fry them in fat. Then put in it as much grated cheese as apples, some ground cloves, a little ginger and cinnamon, two eggs. Stir it together well. Then prepare the dough as for a flat cake, put a small piece of fat into it so that it does not rise, and from above and below, weak heat, let it bake slowly.

Modern Redaction

Filling: 3 apples, ½ stick of butter, 1 ½ cups cheese (the recipe calls for a solid cheese but I used ricotta), 3 eggs, 1 tsp spices (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg).

Grate the apples and saute in butter until softened.

Grate the cheeses, beat the eggs, and combine with other filling ingredients.

Crust: 1 ½ cups flour, ¼ lb butter, ½ tsp sugar, pinch salt, 3/8 cup water (plus an optional ½ tsp vinegar).

Combine flour, salt and sugar. Use a pastry cutter or food processor to cut in the butter until it is reduced to pea-sized lumps. Add the water and stir until a dough forms, but do not over-kneed it. Press into a flattened ball and cover snugly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.

Roll out the crust using a floured surface and rolling pin, then transfer to a pie plate.

Add the fillings and bake at 350° until set, around 45 minutes.



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