Hamantaschen are a traditional food for the holiday of Purim, which was this past weekend. I spent a lovely afternoon last week making hamantaschen with some friends and their children and I took lots of pictures so that I could post them here, along with instructions.
The primary ingredients of the mohn filling I make are poppy seeds, raisins, and walnuts.
After that, put the poppy seeds in a pan (I have found that a shallow pan such as a frying pan is best) with one cup of boiling water and cook off the water.
Along with the two cups (now four cups) of poppy seeds, you will need 8 ounces of walnuts and 8 ounces of raisins.
There are many, many recipes for hamantaschen dough out there. Over the years, I have made many of these recipes with my own two hands (and the hands of my children). I have made hundreds of dozens of hamantaschen, and this is the recipe that I always come back to. It is a slightly sweet cookie-type dough that is very forgiving (we originally found it in a holiday publication for preschoolers).
Start with a cup of oil and a cup of sugar.
Transfer the cut-out circles onto a cookie sheet (greased or lined with parchment) and continue rolling out dough and cutting circles until you are out of dough. Do I need to mention that scraps from cutting out cookies can be reused?
I get about 40 cookie dough circles from one batch of dough, with small scraps left over for sampling.
Solo makes a variety of other fillings, but I had an order for 2 dozen prune hamantaschen from a friend so that's the only one I used this year.
Basically, you put a generous dollop of filling in the center of the dough circle and then you fold up the edges of the circle to make a triangular cookie. Step one, pinch together one corner:
One important note -- you really need to pinch the dough together and make sure that it stays together. Too much flour on the rolling out surface can be a problem because the dough won't stick to itself. Messy hamantaschen can result, especially if you use a jam filling:
2 cups (about 10 oz.)
1/2 lb. raisins
1/2 lb. walnuts
2-3 tablespoons jam
1/2 cup sugar
juice and rind of one lemon
1/2 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon each nutmeg, ginger, cloves
Soak poppy seeds in boiling water; when water cools, pour off and then put into a pot and cook, stirring
pretty constantly until dry.
Grind seeds, nuts, and raisins together well. (You may have to do this in multiple batches.)
Mix ground mixture with rest of ingredients. Mix well. Taste and adjust seasonings and sweetness/tartness if
Makes enough for about 40 cookies.
1 cup sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3-1/2 cups flour (We use 2 unbleached white, 1-1/2 whole wheat)
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons honey
Beat oil and sugar together.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each.
Add honey, continuing beating.
Gradually add flour and baking powder (sift them together if you insist - we never do). Mix well, using hands at the end if absolutely necessary.
Roll dough out to 1/4-inch thickness (don't roll too thin). Batter may be slightly oily. If the batter is crumbly and won't hold together, adding an egg yolk or egg white usually does the trick.
We sometimes roll the dough between pieces of waxed paper if it seems necessary, but usually we don't.
Cut dough into 3-inch circles, or a near approximation. Put a generous amount of filling in the center of each circle and fold up the sides to form a triangle shape.
Bake on greased cookie sheets at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown.
LEARN FROM OUR EXPERIENCES DEPARTMENT: Don't double the recipe, don't refrigerate the dough.