Apple walnut kugel
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup cider
- 1/2 cup currants (cranberries, raisins)
- 2 large tart apples, such as Granny Smith, Fuji, Royal Gala
- Juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons mascarpone (ricotta, cream cheese, quark)
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 2 teaspoon cinnamon, divided
- pinch of salt, plus more for cooking the pasta
- 250g fresh pasta (120g dry pasta)
- cup brown sugar
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees
- Meanwhile, in a saute pan over medium heat, toast the walnuts until fragrant and slightly darkened, stirring frequently, 5 minutes. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan, bring the cider to a boil.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the currants. Allow the currants to rehydrate until plump, about 15 minutes.
- Core and peel the apples. Thinly slice the apples lengthwise, and toss with the lemon juice in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar.
- Whisk in the mascarpone, then the milk, lemon zest, vanilla, one teaspoon cinnamon and pinch of salt until well-combined. Set aside.
- Cook the fresh pasta in the boiling water just until tender, 1 to 2 minutes (5-7 min dry pasta). Drain and allow to cool slightly in a colander.
- Add the pasta to the custard base, tossing gently to coat the noodles.
- Stir in the walnuts, currants (and remaining cider) and apples (with any remaining lemon juice).
- Place the kugel mixture in a greased deep-dish pie pan or in a 12-by-9-inch baking dish.
- Combine the brown sugar and remaining cinnamon in a small bowl. Drizzle the mixture over the kugel.
- Bake the kugel until set and golden on top, 50 minutes. Cool slightly on a rack, then serve.