I cannot find clear jel in any of the stores near me. Is there something I can use as substitute? I am wanting to try the apple pull apart bread that KAF posted on their website.
Just use cornstarch.
Now that I see the recipe I think I'd like to try it myself - I'd treat the apple filling the same way I do for pie, which is to macerate the apples for 24 hours, drain off the liquids, cook it down until it thickens. You can either cook it down until it naturally thickens (which takes awhile) or you can cook it most of the way down and then add a small amount of cornstarch at the end to finish thickening it up.
In fact, the original recipe uses 1 tsp of cornstarch for the filling, so you should be good with the cornstarch.
I just make that recipe and used the same amount of cornstarch. You will need to add a little liquid to dissolve the cornstarch. I stirred the cornstarch into the sugar/butter, then added 2-3 tablespoons cider, just enough to dissolve the cornstarch. Then boiled it as directed. When I cooked the apples in that mixture, I cooked it a little longer to make up for the addition of the liquid.
BE AWARE you cannot cut these strips and stack them like King Arthur describes. When you try to pick up the strips of dough covered with the slippery apple mixture, the dough stretches and the apples slide all over the place. I had no choice but to cut the dough in smaller pieces, then ended up standing my pans on end, and stacking (really PILING) the dough and apples in the pan any old way I could. When baked, most of the dough rose up, the apples ended up in the bottom, and when turned out, It was more like pieces of dough with apples piled on top. A real mess. It tasted wonderful, however, and we ate every bit. Some of the dough pushed up so much, it overhung and those edges burned. Some also pushed out and onto the bottom of the oven. A mess. So be sure you put a baking sheet, silicone sheet or foil on the rack beneath.
I have thought that if the dough/apples, once layered, could be chilled, you might have a better chance of getting it to cut and into the pans like KA illustrated.
Please let us know how this works for you.