by Chef Laura Frankel, Executive Chef for Spertus Kosher Catering and author of Jewish Cooking For All Seasons and Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes.
This elegant confection elevates the triangle shaped cookie we all know and love. In the spirit of Persian flavors I have used a Rosewater and Almond Filling.
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons fresh orange zest
1 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of salt
8 ounce almond paste
4 ounces softened butter
4 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (I like Nielsen Massey extract)
1/2 teaspoon rosewater*
4 tablespoons almond flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill – found at most grocery stores and Whole Foods)
Make the filling:
Mix all of the above ingredients together in a mixer until very smooth. The almond filling can be made up to 5 days ahead of baking and can be stored covered in the refrigerator or frozen for up to 1 month.
Make the Hamantaschen:
Cream butter and sugar together in a mixer until light and fluffy.
Add the orange zest, orange juice and vanilla extract to the mixture.
With the machine running on low add the eggs one at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each egg.
Add the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix to combine – be careful not to over mix or the dough will be tough.
Roll the dough on a floured surface to 1/4- inch thickness. Dip a round cookie cutter into flour and cut circles in the dough. Fill the dough with 1/2 teaspoon of filling and pinch the edges together to form a triangle. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 12–15 minutes until lightly browned.
Transfer the Hamantaschen to a cooling rack.
Recipes: Desserts, Purim, Hamantaschen, Dairy, Kosher
*From Chef Laura Frankel:
Rosewater is a distillation of rose petals. Rose oil is made from distilling crushed rose petals and is used in cosmetics and perfumes. Rosewater is a by-product of this process.
Rosewater is commonly used in Persian and Indian recipes. It is used in desserts as well as savory dishes.
In Europe, rosewater is used to flavor marzipan, marshmallows and scones.
Last year, my husband and I were in Paris and visited many patisseries owned by friends. Rose scented desserts are “in”; we saw and ate them everywhere in Paris. We passed by a shop everyday in Le Marais that only sold rosewater products and baked goods.
Rosewater is an old ingredient that is enjoying a resurgence in popularity. I encourage you to try it. I use it in Persian cooking, desserts, vinaigrettes and marinades. When first trying to cook with rosewater-go slow at first until you get a feel for it. A little goes a long way.
Rosewater can be found in many grocery stores, Persian or Middle Eastern stores and on line. Rosewater is a distillation and does not require hashgacha