Hamentaschen – 3 ways
I used my usual dough recipe from Second Helpings, Please (image below), though I don’t love it because it tends to misbehave in unpredictable ways. It has never come out the same way twice in twenty years (sigh, I feel so old saying that, but it’s true – the cookbook was a wedding present at my first wedding, and the children of that marriage are now far closer to 20 than to zero).
This time, I did it in the food processor, where, of course, it totally jammed and made a sticky mess. Ultimately, I added a lot more flour than usual and they came out okay. It doesn’t taste like it usually does, but it worked.
I always do one batch with a classic prune filling – or, as my baker sister likes to say, dried plums. It just sounds so much swankier that way.
For the variations, I decided to do a halva filling like this one from Modern Manna, inspired by the awe-inspiring variety of halvas in the machaneh yehudah shuk:
I made my filling with ordinary techina (tahini) that we had sitting in the fridge, mixed with a sugar-water syrup, but I also sprinkled in a bit of Starbucks instant coffee powder. That may have been a mistake, because it actually masked a bit of the halva flavour. Oh, well. (you can see the basic recipe here)
The filling was gooey going in, but actually firmed up nicely, as promised, once baked.
However, I was not entirely delighted with these, because the baked filling tasted a bit too much like peanut butter. For all the (okay, small) effort I’d put in, I probably could have just used Skippy. Weird.
For an encore, on the same theme, I decided to do a batch inspired by the oodles of delicious, soft, fresh marzipan (in Hebrew, “martzipan”) that’s found in every candy shop and grocery store. I had some yummy homemade almond paste in the freezer already (I use this recipe and freeze it in logs, instead of buying, because it’s WAY overpriced here!).
I cut off bits of still-frozen almond paste and added pareve chocolate chips for good measure:
Now, this was the same dough that I used for the prune and halva hamentaschen, and I promise, I pinched them shut just as well.
But for some reason, these ones ALL popped open:
Still… once you’ve got almond paste, you really can’t go wrong. Right? Open-faced hamentaschen – why the heck NOT?
What are your hamentaschen variations this year??? Oh, yeah, and HAPPY PURIM!!!