Saturday, May 1, 2010
Do you know what "Rugelach" is, let alone how to say the word? What?! You mean you don't? I have to say, I myself didn't know what "Rugelach" was. Well, that's my job this week then isn't it? So, "Rugelach". "Rugelach" is a Jewish pastry/cookie that somewhat resembles a mini croissant. It is filled with things that range from fruit preserves to chocolate. Your choice in filling is all up to you. I first saw this recipe years ago, bookmarked it, and never once tried this recipe out. However, there were great reviews made by people that have made this "Rugelach" and now I actually got to make it. This is another recipe that comes from Ina Garten. In making this recipe, the dough was super simple to make. It took only 5 minutes making it by hand. I did substitute the filling. Instead of apricot preserves, I used strawberry preserves simply because strawberry preserves is my favorite and I didn't want to go out and buy a whole jar of apricot preserves that I have never tried before. I was a little skeptical of changing the preserve flavor because I wondered if I had to omit the raisins or change the nuts. After thinking about it, I decided to keep the filling as is, with the alteration of the preserves, and see what happens. The cookies came out of the oven and were delicious! When you take that first bite, the dough is buttery and flakey, then you begin to taste the strawberry preserves, then you get a hint of cinnamon and then you taste the walnuts and raisins. I loved the layers of flavors in this cookie. Overall, I was glad I kept the recipe as is, with the alteration of the preserves. It came out to be one great cookie. Here's the recipe!
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2-pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar plus 9 tablespoons
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup raisins
1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup apricot preserves, pureed in a food processor (I used strawberry preserves!)
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk, for egg wash
Cream the cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light. Add 1/4 cup granulated sugar, the salt, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour and mix until just combined. Dump the dough out onto a well-floured board and roll it into a ball. Cut the ball in quarters, wrap each piece in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
To make the filling, combine 6 tablespoons of granulated sugar, the brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, the raisins, and walnuts.
On a well-floured board, roll each ball of dough into a 9-inch circle. Spread the dough with 2 tablespoons apricot preserves and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the filling. Press the filling lightly into the dough. Cut the circle into 12 equal wedges—cutting the whole circle in quarters, then each quarter into thirds. Starting with the wide edge, roll up each wedge. Place the cookies, points tucked under, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Chill for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Brush each cookie with the egg wash. Combine 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon and sprinkle on the cookies. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove to a wire rack and let cool.
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