Happy Purim! In our family we have many different cultures, mostly as our extended families have married into other cultures. So this is for my Jewish friends and relatives.  I understand that Hamantaschen is typically served for Purim (honestly it’s so tasty, I’d sneak a batch in whenever no one was looking). So I made some today, the recipe is from Saveur magazine.  As a foodie, mixing cultures brings to light a whole world of tastes which I might not have been familiar with otherwise.  It is incredible how easy it is to make.  I will admit, they are not perfect (for my first attempt), but they taste so good.  So do try making some when you get a chance.

The recipe has cream cheese in it so automatically that makes it delicious.  Add some jam to it and you have just elevated layers of flavor to the pastry.  Cross cultures and you can make these spicy (oh come on now, my logo is a chili).  I made some using apricot jam, strawberry jam, and a spicy habanero jam.  The heat from the habanero is balanced by the sweetness of the pastry.   Again my apologies to any purists of the Hamantaschen variety, but if you have ever cooked with me in the kitchen or attended one of my classes, you will know that recipes are guides limited only by your imagination.  This recipe makes about 18 pieces. Happy Purim!  As always – enjoy!

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
¼ tsp. kosher salt
1 cup flour
2 tbsp. apricot preserves
2 tbsp. strawberry preserves
2 tbsp. habanero jelly
1 egg white, beaten

In a bowl, combine cream cheese, butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt, and beat with a mixer until fluffy. Add flour; beat. Form dough into a disk. Wrap disk in plastic wrap; chill for 30 minutes
Transfer dough to a floured surface; roll to a 3⁄16″ thickness. Using a 2½” round cookie cutter, cut dough into rounds. Reroll scraps; repeat. Transfer the rounds to 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper
Place about ½ tsp. of each of the preserves in the center of the circles
Brush egg white around edges
Fold in edges to form a triangular package, leaving a small opening at the top – start with making a point at the top of the cookie, fold the pastry along a straight line to the bottom of the circle and pinch to form another part of the triangle, fold the other side do meet and pinch (I know, clear as mud, but try it, it will all fall into place)
Refrigerate filled cookies for 30 minutes – this is important as the pastry needs to be cold when it is baked
Heat oven to 350°
Bake cookies until lightly browned, 12 – 15 minutes


Hamantachen ready for the oven.

Hamantaschen pastry

Hamantaschen pastry