Thursday, March 13, 2014

Our Favorite Hamantashen Recipe

Purim begins at sundown on Saturday, March 15th this year, and we're going to be all ready with freshly baked hamantashen!

What are hamantashen, you ask?

hamantash (or hamentasch, see: Other namesYiddish המן־טאַש, pl. hamantashen or hamentaschen) is a filled-pocket cookie or pastry in Ashkenazi Jewish cuisine recognizable for its three-cornered shape. The shape is achieved by folding in the sides of a circular piece of dough, with a filling placed in the center. It is traditionally eaten during theJewish holiday of Purim. Hamantashen are made with many different fillings, including poppy seed (the oldest and most traditional variety),[1] prunes, nut, dateapricotapple, fruit preserves in a lekvar style, cherrychocolatedulce de lechehalva, or even caramel or cheese.[2] Their formation varies from hard pastry to soft doughy casings.  - Wikipedia

 Everyone has their own favorite recipe, and today we're sharing ours with you! 
Our favorite fillings are chocolate and apricot, but you really can't go wrong. 


From: “The Jewish American Kitchen” Raymond Sokolov, via The New Shul

Cookie Dough 
2 cups unbleached flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup sugar
8 TBSP (1 stick) cold butter, cut into small pieces
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 TBSP grated lemon peel

• Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar into a large bowl.
• Work in the butter using a pastry blender or two forks, one held in each hand.
• Add the eggs, mixing in with the pastry blender.
• Add the lemon peel.
• Form the dough into a ball and wrap in wax paper
• Refrigerate for at least 1 hour (overnight is even better)

1 recipe dough
1 recipe filling
1 egg, beaten with 1 TBSP water
• Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
• Divide dough inot portions you can easily roll out.
• On a floured board, roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/8 to 1/4 inc.
• (It rolls out best if placed between 2 sheets of waxed paper, or just heavily flour the board and rolling pin.
• Cut the dough into 3- to 4- inch circles, using the top of a glass or a cookie cutter.
• Fill each circle with a heaping sp of filling and pinch the dough around it into a triangular shape.
• Brush the dough with the egg wash and bake on a greased cookie sheet for 20 to 30 minutes (20 minutes in my oven)
• When the cookies are done, they will look done – appealingly brown.

Makes about 30 Hamantaschen


Apricot Filling
1/2 lb dried apricots
1 1/2 cup water
3/4 cup sugar (less)

• In a small sauce pan, over medium-low heat, cook apricots in wate until very soft.
• Mash or process in food processor.
• Add sugar to taste.
• Simmer over low heat until thick – about 10 minutes.
• Cool before using.

Apple Filling
1 cup(+) applesauce
(less than) 1/2 cup raisins (plumbed and drained)
1/2 cup walnuts (chopped and toasted)
1/8 tsp cinnamon

• Combine all ingredients.
• Blend well.
• Cover and refrigerate.

Chocolate Filling
1/2 cup coco
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup milk, cream or coffee
1 cup toasted chopped walnuts

• Combine all ingredients.
• Blend thoroughly.

Caramel Pecan Filling
3/4 sugar
1/4 cup water
2 cup toasted chopped pecans
7 TBSP unsalted butter or margarine
1/2 cup warm milk
1/4 cup honey

• Bake a single layer of nuts at 350 degrees
• Turn or shake frequently until evenly browned – 5 to 10 m

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