Hamantaschen

When I moved to South Florida, I discovered my love of Jewish food and pastries. I grew up in north Florida (Tallahassee) where there are really no Jewish delis or restaurants. A few weeks ago, it was Purim, a Jewish holiday where a traditional treat is Hamantaschen. At one of the delis we eat at often, they had an unusually large array of Hamantaschen, from the traditional poppy seed to prunes and apricot to an untraditional cherry. I usually get the apricot but this time had a cherry one, and was quite disappointed when I found the filling was almost definitely PIE FILLING! You all know the kind. Thick transparent cherry paste with those plastic like cherries mixed in. Needless to say, I was quite disappointed.

So… I set out to make Hamantaschen. I found many many different recipes. The dough recipes were so different I immediately became confused as to what a traditional Hamantaschen cookie was made of. Some had absolutely no sugar in the dough, others had copious amounts, similar to a sugar cookie. Some had butter, others had oil. The first recipe I made was extremely delicious and buttery, but (darn it!) as flat as a pancake. Not exactly what I was looking for. Then I got my mother in law’s recipe and that held up beautifully, but it had oil, and I usually prefer butter in my cookie recipes. So after a slight adaptation, here is my mother in law’s Hamantaschen Recipe. The filling is unbelievably yummy, almost brownie like… light years better than that pre-made cherry filling! Thanks Mom for such a great recipe!
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Hamantaschen Recipe

2 eggs
4 oz sugar
Pinch salt
3 tbsp melted butter
Vanilla
almond extract
2 cups flour
1 recipe chocolate nut filling (see below)

1. Combine eggs, sugar and salt in bowl of heavy duty mixer. Whip with the paddle attachment until thick and frothy. With the mixer running on medium, add the melted butter in a thin stream until incorporated. Add the vanilla and mix until incorporated

2. Add the flour in two parts, just until incorporated. Do not over mix. Wrap dough in plastic wrap for at least one hour, and up to a few days.

3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll out half of the dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut circles with a 3 inch round cutter or drinking glass. I used a fluted cutter to make the edges more decorative. Place cut circles on a parchment lined sheet pan.

4. Spoon a heaping teaspoon of the chocolate-nut filling in the center of each circle. Turn three sides of the dough up to form the traditional triangle shape. With your fingertip, spread a little water where the dough folds meet to help glue it together. Gently pinch the corners so they adhere. Do not use too much water, or the dough will get wet and mushy and stick to your fingers.

5. Bake at 375 degrees for about 15-18 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Makes about 30 cookies

Note: I used the convection feature of my oven to bake the cookies, and they turned out very nicely. If you do this, make sure you rotate the pan halfway through to ensure even browning.

Note 2: I ran out of chocolate nut filling and used some apricot and raspberry preserves as filling. This is also very tasty!

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Hamantaschen Filling

6 oz ground nuts (walnuts, pecans, almonds or a combination)
2 tbsp cocoa powder
3 egg whites
3 oz sugar
2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp Vanilla

1. Combine all ingredients and stir to incorporate. Refrigerate for at least one hour, and up to a few days. It should be the thickness of chunky peanut butter after refrigeration.

Note: I used half pecans and half almonds (what I happened to have in my pantry) and also added a little splash of almond extract with the vanilla.

 

20 Comments

  • Aran 10 YEARS AGO

    first of all, i didn’t know you lived in south florida! i’m in palm beach county. and you?
    i saw this recipe in another blog recently but i had never heard of them before that. now i’m intrigued and want to try them myself. the photos are absolutely beautiful!

  • Candace 10 YEARS AGO

    Howdy neighbor! I’m a little south of you, in Ft Lauderdale/Hollywood.

    Thanks for the comments on the pics… its always nice to be married to a pro-photographer!

  • Rolanda (mom) 10 YEARS AGO

    wow!yummmy!beautiful hamanasch and beautiful pics !

  • Jordana 10 YEARS AGO

    I’ve been trying to get these cookies looking pretty for two weeks now! I’ve been using the Smitten Kitchen recipe and they completely collapse all over the place on me. Yours stay together beautifully! Perhaps there will be a Round 3 with a new recipe.

  • Danielle 10 YEARS AGO

    A treat for both the mouth and the eyes.

  • Candace 10 YEARS AGO

    Thanks Mom! :)

    Jordana, I feel your pain! I’ve been trying to get these cookies pretty for weeks too. It seems the really yummy dough looks like pile o’ poo… especially with chocolate filling… hehe! This dough doesn’t have the texture of a sugar cookie, its a bit firmer and slightly dry, but its still very good. Good luck!

  • peabody 10 YEARS AGO

    I have only ever seen them, never eaten them. I must change that. The turned out lovely.

  • Elana 10 YEARS AGO

    These are the most gorgeous hamantaschen I have ever seen!

  • Aran 10 YEARS AGO

    Candance! I passed an award to you over at my blog. Read more here http://cannelle-vanille.blogspot.com/2008/04/matcha-lemon-and-chocolate-opera-cake.html

  • Irene 10 YEARS AGO

    Wow, what a great site! How is it that I’m just discovering it? And a little too late for Purim – but maybe there is not a bad time to make humentashen?

    I love your pictures. I hope you don’t mind if I add you to my blogroll!

    Irene

  • Hillary 10 YEARS AGO

    Your hamantaschen are beautiful! Much more beautiful than mine :). How did you get the edges to have ridges? Cookie cutter?

  • Barbara Blanco 10 YEARS AGO

    Looks yummy!

  • Mrs_Rod 10 YEARS AGO

    They look yummy!!!!!!

  • Neen 10 YEARS AGO

    Chocolate nut filling, what an innovative idea! And as another bloggie who made Hamantaschen for the first time this year (successfully, I might add, which is a huge relief when I see the number of other folks who have had issues), congratulations on conquering the fikle things! Homemade is so infinitely better than what they share in the delis, which are usually more pastry like, enormous, and, well, unimpressive. Kudos for you for sticking to this until it worked!

  • Sheltie Girl 10 YEARS AGO

    Oh…yum, yum, yum!

    Natalie @ Gluten a Go Go

  • Hale 10 YEARS AGO

    hello,

    i am making them right now, they looks so delicious thanks for the recipe. I have a quastion, your saying do not over mix. But my dough was a little crumbly is that supposed to be ?

    thanks

  • Sophie 10 YEARS AGO

    I’m Sophie, Key Ingredient’s Chief Blogger. We would like to feature this recipe on our blog. Please email [email protected] if interested. Thanks :)

    Sophie
    http://blog.keyingredient.com/

  • Rhiannon 10 YEARS AGO

    These look so perfect! I would love to have tried one of these – I’m imagining something crunchy and nutty (a combo I’m totally a fan of!)

  • Sophie 10 YEARS AGO

    We’d like to invite you to participate in our July berry recipe contest. All competitors will be placed on our blogroll, and the winner will receive a fun prize! Please email me, [email protected], if you’re interested. Feel free to check out our blog for more details. (Click on my name in the message to visit our blog. :)

  • Riley 4 YEARS AGO

    wow great pictures! the filling sounds really interesting.. I have lots of leftover egg whites that I’ve been wanting to use up…I’m definitely making them! thanks for the recipe : )

Recent Comments

  • I visited your blog after a long time today and was so thrilled to see all these new posts and the new design. As always, your food looks gorgeous.
  • The best!
  • wow great pictures! the filling sounds really interesting.. I have lots of leftover egg whites that I've been wanting to use up...I'm definitely making them! thanks for the recipe : )
  • I did have this salad when we visited the Philippines! It was certainly delicious and very fulfilling. Although this dish is more Japanese in origin, that restaurant gave it its own twist. The Filipinos really have a good palate for excellent food! Anyway, thank you for the recipe. I will surely give this a try!
  • Absolutely mind-blowing. I tried doing spoons once.....do your spoons have a rounded bowl or a flat surface. Did many break if you were trying to push it in a little to make it have a little depth.

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