Purim begins tonight, and with it come delicious hamantashen.
The low-down on Hamantashen:
Hamentashen are triangular filled-pocket cookies. The oldest variety had a poppy seed filling, but fruit preserves are most commonly used as fillings today. The name hamantash (singular of hamantashen) is known as a reference to the triangular-shaped hat of Haman, the villain of Purim in the Book of Ester, while tasch also means “pocket” in German, which reflects the pocket shape of the cookies. The good news is, there’s a super easy recipe you can use to make your own delicious hamantashen in just a few minutes and on a college budget. The even better news is there are several different varieties of that recipe you can make to add a bit of a twist to this sweet tradition. Best news: you can make all four recipes at once.
1. Traditional Marmalade-Filled Hamantash:
2. Apple Pie Hamantash:
3. Nutz-Over-Chocolate Hamantash:
4. Tart-and-Fruity Hamantash:
Prep Time: 20 minutes; 2 hours (refrigeration)
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours, 35-40 minutes
Servings: 14-20 Hamantashen
1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour (pre-sifted)
2 teaspoons baking powder
Base dough for all four Hamantashen:
1. Mash together butter, sugar and egg in a large bowl using a fork.
2. Add in vanilla, flour and baking powder and use the same mashing technique. Toss half the dough into another bowl. In bowl one, add in a tablespoon of orange juice. Leave bowl two as is. (Hint: if it’s difficult to mix, add up to one tablespoon of either milk or water)
3. Put both bowls in the fridge for at least two hours. While the dough is chilling, make these fillings:
- Ginger & Orange Marmalade (or whatever marmalade makes you happy): find marmalade of your choice; no preparation required here.
- Apple Filling: thinly slice one apple and chop slices into smaller pieces. In a small bowl, mix together chopped apple, ½ teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/8 cup brown sugar and raisins to taste.
- Peanut-Chocolate Filling: mix together 1/8 cup peanut butter, 1/4 cup nuts and 1/8 cup chocolate chips.
- Fruit Tart Filling: mix together 1 package cream cheese, 1/3 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add in ¾ cup whipping cream until stiff. Chop up fruit of your choosing and add to the mix.
4. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
5. Remove the dough from the fridge. Grab and squeeze the dough so it sticks together. Flatten both sections out on a cutting board, cookie sheet or really anything flat. Dig in with your knuckles and pound with the flat base of your palm. It should be about ¼ inch thick.
6. Find a large glass and cut out round pieces of both doughs. Remember to keep track of which dough is which; using a sticky note to lable the doughs may help.
7. For fillings 1, 2 and 3, place ½ teaspoon of filling in the center of each circle and fold dough three ways to enclose the circle, pinching the corners.
8. Make a few hamantashen without fillings as filling 4 will be added after baking. The orange dough is for fillings 1 and 2 and the plain dough goes with fillings 3 and 4.
9. Bake for 15-20 minutes (Hint: check often to avoid overcooking).
10. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
- For filling 1: none (go ahead and enjoy)
- For filling 2: sprinkle some cinnamon on top.
- For filling 3: microwave chocolate chips small amounts at a time until they are melted completely. Drizzle over hamantashen.
- For filling 4: plop a teaspoon of tart cream on top. Garnish with fresh chopped fruit and berries to taste.
On Purim, its a Mitzvah or commandment to indulge in a festive meal. So go ahead and stuff your face with hamantashen.
Want more Purim deliciousness? Check out these links: