Last year I did a "Hamantaschen Test Kitchen" with six different varieties:
Cream Cheese Dough
Gluten Free Hamantaschen
Aunt Dora's Recipe
This year, I thought I would give some of my favorite tips and tricks for hamantaschen baking:
1. Make the dough in advance. It will work better if cold, and most hamantaschen doughs freeze really well. Just let it get soft enough to roll out once you're ready to use them.
2. Make and freeze ahead of time. I have 4 dozen hamantaschen hanging out in my freezer from last week just waiting to be packaged and given out to friends and family. Don't feel pressure to make them all at once.
3. I love using my silicone rolling mat
to roll out the dough. This keeps me from needing to add too much flour as I roll, and it keeps the flavor of the dough intact. I also recommend baking on parchment
. It's the best way to keep things from sticking. Also helps if the filling oozes out a little - makes cleanup much easier!
4. Brush each dough circle with a little egg white before filling. I lay out all the circles on the cookie sheet, brush them all, then drop the filling, then pinch them all. It works best in an assembly line fashion like this, rather than trying to do each hamantaschen one by one. (Then again, if you're doing it with the kids...let them have their fun!)
5. Fillings should be nice and thick, but not too dry. Chocolate chips by themselves make for dry hamantashen, but chocolate spread
works great. Some people are purists and require poppyseed
. If you like it, have at it! Buy high quality oven-safe jams, they work really well. It's worth it for the yum.
6. Be creative! One of my favorite tricks is to spread some jimmies
or multi-colored sprinkles down on the mat and roll the dough out on top of them. This way the sprinkles are in the outside of the hamantaschen. For getting really fancy, I might drizzle chocolate on top or even dip part or all of each finished cookie in chocolate. Can't go wrong with that!
Some other interesting hamantaschen links:
Midnight Mint Hamantaschen
- these look divine
Poppy Seed Rolls
- a little twist on Purim
- someday I'm going to make these
What's your favorite flavor? Weigh in over here at the Reform Judaism blog
What kind are you making this year?