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Hamentaschen Reimagined

March 18, 2011

Hamentashen, the ultimate Purim food.  Triangular and, traditionally, filled with fruit jams, poppyseeds and even prune (eww…sorry to yuck your yum if you like them, but, seriously??), it seems over the past few days just about everyone on my Facebook newsfeed has been making them. Whether thought of as the symbol of evil Haman‘s hat, pointy ears, or the hidden filling’s metaphor to Haman’s hidden evil plan, there’s no denying that this sweet treat is an iconic classic for the holiday.

Now, I make my blasphemous announcement.  I was never a fan of hamentashen.  I hate the goopy jam filling and I certainly never liked the poppyseed or prune filling.  Over the last couple years, I’ve been playing with other fillings to try to get myself to like them more (it’s a cookie, why shouldn’t I like it?).  After getting an email from Joy of Kosher with a bunch of creative Hamentaschen recipes, I knew this was the year to go for it.

I made two sets of dough: one regular and one chocolate (replace 1/4 cup of the flour with cocoa).  Well, actually, I didn’t follow my own directions and I added the flour too fast and ended up with totally crumbly dough…so, I actually made FOUR sets of dough because I had to start over.  Hate it when that happens!

Basic Hamentschen Dough Recipe
1 cup margarine
1 1/4 cup sugar
3 egg
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
4-5 cups flour (depends on the weather)
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Cream the margarine and sugar.  Add egg and vanilla and beat.  Stir in flour, baking powder and salt until a ball of dough is formed (you may not need all of the flour if it’s a particularly dry day).  Refrigerate for one hour, or up to twelve hours.

Before you roll and fill your hamentaschen, prepare all of your fillings to make the task easy.  This, folks, is where the magic happens.  Branch out.  Go nuts (literally)!  Be experimental.  Below is what I did (and wanted to do) but the possibilities really are endless.  One word of advice, if you go for jam fillings, get the cans of pie and pastry filling (Solo is good) instead of regular jam.  Regular jam melts down and you’ll end up with a half empty hamentaschen after it bakes.

Fillings for regular dough…

  • Peanut butter and jelly (just put a bit of each…don’t mix or it will look disgusting)
  • Cinnamon dulce de leche – the same filling recipe as this one, but with cinnamon added to the filling.  This one turned into a big mess.  It tasted amazing but looked a bit strange.
  • Apple pie (sauteed apples with some brown sugar and cinnamon)
  • Chocolate chips (pretty classic)
  • I didn’t have time, but I wanted to try out pumpkin pie filling or cheesecake filling!

Fillings for chocolate dough…

  • Peanut butter chocolate chip (I sweeten the peanut butter with a bit of honey)
  • Strawberry jam (hello chocolate covered strawberries!)
  • White chocolate chips
  • I didn’t have time, but I wanted to try out s’mores (marshmallows and crushed graham crackers)

Once the dough is chilled, roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thick.  Use a cup to cut circles out of the dough.

Fill with about one teaspoon of your favorite filling.  Many people try to pinch the circle into a triangle, but if you do that they will definitely open up.  Instead, fold the circle into a triangle.  For a fantastic (and humorous) explanation on how to form the hamentaschen so they stay together, click here.

Place them on parchment lined cookie sheets and bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes, until they are just browning at the edges.

Whether these are for your seudah or your shalach manot, they’re sure to be a hit.  Enjoy and Happy Purim!  פורים שמח

One Comment leave one →
  1. March 19, 2011 8:08 pm

    Thanks for the mention, glad we were able to inspire you. Looks like yours came out great!

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