Hamantaschen (Sweet Edition)
The Jewish holiday Purim is beginning as I write this at sundown. Purim is traditionally a holiday filled with debauchery and comedic skits; however given that we are in a global pandemonium, I'm celebrating this year by making hamantaschen, the traditional cookie of Purim.
Hamantaschen are supposed to represent the three-cornered hat worn by the bad guy of Purim, Haman. You can learn more about them here.
The best thing about hamantaschen is you can be really creative with the fillings. Traditionally, they are filled with poppy seeds, jam, or dried fruits. This year, I made sweet and savory ones (savory recipe coming soon!). For the dough, I used Molly Yeh's recipe for blueberry cream cheese hamantaschen and then I improvised based on her recipe for my fillings.
Here's how to make them:
1) Make the cookie dough according to Molly Yeh's recipe and chill it for at least 2 hours or overnight. Chilling the dough helps moisten the dough evenly and lets the gluten in the flour relax to ensure the cookies are crisp and crumbly rather than chewy.
2) Roll the dough out and cut into 3-inch circles. I don't have a round cookie cutter, so I used a rocks glass.
3) Add your fillings. Adding the correct amount of filling is tricky - you don't want to overfill it, but you also don't want too little filling. Try to aim for about a 1-inch border of cookie dough surrounding your filling dollop, which should be about 2 teaspoons. For my hamantaschen, I used cream cheese on all of them and paired it with either jam or chocolate chips.
4) Brush egg wash (1 egg beaten with a splash of water or milk) around the border of each cookie.
5) Pinch the dough together to form three corners.
6) Brush egg wash over the outer edges of the cookie.
7) Add sugar or sprinkles to the top and sides of the hamantaschen.
8) Bake at 350 for about 13-15 minutes.
Enjoy and happy Purim!