Family Recipes: My Mom’s Apple Rogaliki

My Mom | Мама

Flaky apple rolls are part of my Ukrainian tasting menu Bud’mo!. This recipe is one of the most cherished in our family. Every time I bake apple rogaliks, my home smells like childhood, and it brings back my best memories. I remember waking up Sunday morning because of the same amazing smell. I hear Mom’s voice calling, “Breakfast’s ready!” She is back, with me, and everything will be okay. Спасибо, мама!

Dough | Тесто

This rich dough was very popular during the Soviet time. It amazes me how women were able to cook and bake delicious food being so frugal and using a pretty limited assortment of ingredients. Butter was way too fancy to use for every-day baking, so margarine was used instead. Everything else — a little bit of this, a little bit of that — was available and not very expensive.

This dough is easy to make, no special skills were required. It is not sticky and a pleasure to knead. After the initial 30 minutes to start the fermentation process, it can be stored in a refrigerator for up to 3 days, slowly getting better and better. It means, working women could easily incorporate following this recipe into their busy schedule.

This dough is very versatile. Use it for sweet and savory, open and closed, big and small pies and pastries. When rolled thin, it gets crispy when baked. Thicker layers of this dough make a nice soft crumb.

Apples | Яблоки

Rogaliks can be filled with many different fillings. My Mom always made them with apple confiture. As a child, I was sure it’s her special secret recipe, and we’re the only lucky people on Earth to have her making this kind of apples! Today, I know this preparation was known and used all over Western Ukraine (Kharkiv, Poltava, Kremenchuk, Sumy, etc.) at the very least.

Fresh apples are washed, peeled, cored, and sliced. Then mixed with sugar and left at room temperature for 1-2 days to macerate. At the end of the process, apple slices are swimming in the sugary apple juice. To become a confiture, they are slowly brought to simmer and immediately taken off the heat to cool down to room temperature twice a day 3-5 times.

Apple Rogaliki

Prep Time3 hrs
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time3 hrs 25 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Eastern European, European
Keyword: apple, dessert, lycooking, lyukum cooking lab, pastry, recipe, roll
Servings: 32 rogaliks


for dough

  • 500 g wheat flour all-purpose
  • 100 g butter unsalted
  • 1 tsp Saf Instant Yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 100 g sour cream
  • 100 g milk whole or 2%
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp kosher salt

for filling

  • 4 apples large Granny Smith
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean

for assembly

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar turbinado


for filling

  • Wash, peel, core, and slice apples. In a large bowl, shake apple slices and sugar to make sure every slice is evenly coated with sugar crystals. Leave them at room temperature for 1-2 days to soften and release juice. When apples are covered with their juice, add vanilla bean and slowly bring the mixture to simmer.Take it off the heat to cool down to room temperature. Repeat once a day 3-5 times. In the end, strain the syrup and cook it down if needed. Store apple confiture refrigerated.
    Apple Confiture

for dough

  • Use a food processor (s-blade) or your hands to crumb butter and flour. Mix in other dry ingredients.
  • Mix wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Combine dry and wet mixtures, make the dough, knead it well, and let it stay at room temperature for about 30-45 minutes to activate the yeast. Cover and refrigerate it for at least another hour, and it is ready.

for shaping and assembly

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 standard baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix egg yolk and water to prepare egg wash. Have a shallow bowl with turbinado sugar handy.
  • Divide the dough into two equal parts. Work with one at a time, keeping the other one refrigerated. Roll the dough into a circle 1/8″ thick.
    Making Apple Rogaliki
  • Let the dough circle to rest for 5 minutes and cut it into 16 segments.
    Making Apple Rogaliki
  • Spoon a few apple slices on each one and roll rogaliks.
    Making Apple Rogaliki
  • Arrange rogaliks on baking sheets and let them rise in a warm (80°F to 85°F), draft-free place. They will increase in size at least twice, so leave enough space between them. Brush them with egg wash and sprinkle with turbinado sugar.
    Making Apple Rogaliki
  • Bake rogaliks for 20-25 minutes or until golden on a middle rack.
My Mom's Apple Rogaliki