Although my family has never been very religious, I remember that for the period of time that we belonged to a synagogue Purim was a time to wear costumes, play games and win prizes at a bazaar, and watch the rabbi and the other men get drunk while reading the Book of Esther. However, even in the non-synagogue years, we always made Hamantaschen for Purim.
When I first graduated from college, my mom must have given me her recipe over the phone. I know I made it a few times, but today was the first time I’ve made in years. Here’s what I found on my 3 by 5 card.
- 4 cups flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- shake of salt
- 1 stick of butter
- 1/2 to 3/4 cups of sugar
- 2 eggs
- (grated orange or lemon rind)
- oranje juice
- cream sugar and butter
- add eggs beat well
- add flour mixture with rind gradually
- add orange juice to moisten
- refrigerate for an hour
- roll out 1/8 inch
- brush with egg wash
- bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes
Yes, that’s really how I spelled hamantaschen and orange. There are numerous recipes from that year that also say sause. I was a pretty sloppy speller but oranje?
I was really excited to get started and make the most of my recipe and enjoy my hamantaschen. I was especially excited to roll out dough on my counters instead of struggling with that rolled pastry mat.
It went pretty well and I used a glass to cut out circles that would be filled with the cherry pie filling and apricot preserves I bought.
I noticed they were a little thin and sort of heavy but I got them on the tray, gave them a brush of egg wash and put them in the oven.
I went on to roll out my second batch. I made them a little thicker this time and they definitely looked nicer.
These went in when the others came out and the first batch looked awful.
And when they were cool enough I tried to get them off the tray. I never greased the sheet because the recipe didn’t say to and these thin heavy hamantaschen resisted.
There were a few casualties, mostly little corners that still tasted pretty good since I ate them as they fell off.
At this point I felt a little defeated. I knew my second batch was definitely better because the dough was thicker but I hadn’t greased the sheet and I was worried they would also break apart when I tried to get them off.
So I greased a new cookie sheet, dropping it on the floor and scaring away my baking companion Chica who was so patiently sitting by my feet. And then I decided there would be no more hamantaschen but I didn’t want to waste the dough. I mixed together some cinnamon and sugar and sprinkled it over the remaining rolled out dough.
Then I sprinkled it with some raisins and began rolling it up.
I cut it into about one inch rolls and and put it on a greased baking sheet.
Meanwhile, my second batch of hamantaschen were finished baking and they looked perfect.
And when I braced myself for chipping them off the baking sheet, they came right off. No chipping necessary.
This batch was such a success.
Mike and I sampled hamantaschen from the first batch and they still tasted pretty good. But these look great and I bet they’ll taste wonderful.
And those rolled up dough things. They look pretty good too.
I haven’t tasted one yet but I’m sure that they’ll be sweet and soft and good. I guess if you’re not a raisin fan, they might suck. Mike asked hopefully if the brown things were chocolate chips. I guess that would make them even better but in my frustration I went with raisins first.
So it all turned out well. I thought I would have tons of hamantaschen to share but this is a nice mix of delicious treats. Good thing I did eight miles this morning.