First, make apple preserves with the ☆ ingredients. Slice the apples into small, thin wedges (cut an apple vertically into eighths, and slice into a thickness of 3 mm).
Put Step 1 in a deep heat-resistant container, add the sugar and lemon juice, softly cover with cling film, and microwave for 10 minutes at 700 W. After 10 minutes, skim off the scum, and stir well.
Microwave for a further 5 minutes. When they have become translucent, they are ready. Add cinnamon, mix, and set aside. Note: If it looks like they were turning into jam, shorten the cooking time!
To make the dough. Add vegetable oil, hot water, and sugar to the room temperature butter, and mix. Add the sifted flour and baking powder, and mix (don't over-mix).
Dust the work surface, and roll the dough out so it becomes about 18-20 cm in diameter and 5 mm thick (this time, I wanted to make the cookies look very nice, so after rolling the dough out, I shaped it into a beautiful circle using the bottom of a cake pan).
Cut the dough into 8 wedges.
Put the apple preserves from Step 3 (about the size of the tip of your thumb) on the outside edge of the dough. Roll up the dough from the outside.
Repeat Step 5 to Step 7, and line them on a baking tray. Bake in a oven preheated at 180℃ for 20-24 minutes. Adjust the baking time accordingly. Once the edges have turned light brown, they are done.
Sprinkle powdered sugar using a tea strainer to finish. They go really well with tea.
Story Behind this Recipe
I learned how to make these cookies from my Turkish husband's younger sister. At first, my husband was making these himself, but somehow I became the one who makes these cookies now! The Turkish name is "Elmali pasta" (dessert with apples).
I've only seen all-purpose flour in supermarkets in Turkey. People make bread and desserts with all-purpose flour. So I also use all-purpose flour, but of course, you can use cake flour as well. Again, you can use any kind of apples. Adjust the amounts of sugar and lemon juice depending on the size of apples or to your taste. They are also delicious if you add finely minced walnuts to the apple preserves.