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Apricot Hamantaschen

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Yields about 30 cookies

  • by from The New Jewish Table: Modern Seasonal Recipes for Traditional Dishes

These filled pastries, tri-cornered to mimic Haman’s hat and served during Purim celebrations, are commonly filled with prunes or poppy seeds, but apricot filling is the author's favorite.

  • 4 cups dried apricots
  • 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 tsp. freshly grated orange zest
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Place the apricots in a medium bowl. Add boiling water to cover and set aside to soak for 1 hour.

Whisk together the flour and baking powder in a medium bowl. Whisk together 2 of the eggs, 1 cup of the sugar, and the lemon zest and orange zest in a large bowl, whisking until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is creamy and foamy. Sift the flour mixture into the egg mixture, stirring together with a wooden spoon until combined and a dough forms. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Drain the apricots in a colander, stirring to eliminate the surface water, and then blot dry on paper towels. Transfer them to a chopping board or bowl and finely chop. Mix the apricots, walnuts if using, and the remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a medium bowl, stirring until well combined.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray two baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured board to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out 3-inch circles (use a biscuit cutter). Place a generous spoonful of filling in the center of each circle, then fold up three sides so the cookie looks like a 3-cornered hat, pinching the dough edges together but leaving the center open as shown in the photo. Gather the dough scraps and reroll; cut and fill in the same way. Arrange the cookies on the prepared baking sheets.

Mix the remaining 2 eggs with 6 Tbs. cool water, whisking until combined. Lightly brush the cookies with the egg wash, which will give them a nice color. Bake until the pastry is golden brown—20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the cookies from the baking sheets to wire racks to cool.

Photo: Renee Comet

I had trouble getting the dough to hold together and ended up adding milk and kneading it with a dough hook. Then the triangles came "unstuck" despite the egg wash. When I checked other Hamantaschen recipes, they all had some oil and shortening - is there a missing ingredient? Also, a 1-egg wash would be more than adequate, as would half the filling amount. The flavours were fine. hh

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