There seems to be a big debate among food bloggers about whether this mandatory Purim treat is spelled with an "a" and a "c" Hamantaschen or with an "e" and no "c" Hamentashen. Even though my spell checker has the dreaded red line underneath the one with the "c," the blogging community seems to be split. Either way you spell it, there is no denying that a good Hamentashen recipe is a must for Purim and this one is the best that I know of. Serve these along side crackle top chocolate chip cookies and snickerdoodle blondies for a real dessert treat!
What Is The Best Hamentashen Recipe Filling?
The fun thing about hamantaschen filling is that it can be made with virtually anything you can dream up. The traditional hamentaschen recipe is made with a sugar cookie type base and a jam filling. Then it is folded into a triangle shape. In our house, we prefer apricot jam with strawberry as a close second. Old schoolers, like your bubbie and zadie, probably prefer prune and poppy seed (mohn) filling. If filled with nutella or chocolate spread you get a creamy smooth filling. You can even use chocolate chips as your hamentashen filling and they will not melt. This means that they do not lose their shape but remain as chunky chocolate chips. (But you already know that from making our chocolate chip cookies).
How To Make
This tasty hamantaschen dough is easy to make and produces truly delicious cookies. They hold up well during baking but this dough does need to be refrigerated for at least 2 hours so plan ahead. This hamentashen recipe is made with a plant based non-dairy butter substitute. The kind I used is in stick form and turns out much better than the kind in a tub.
Tips for the dough
- To make the dough begin by creaming the softened non-dairy butter substitute then add sugar and beat for 3-5 minutes or until fluffy. Then beat in the egg and vanilla.
- This recipe calls for a bit of lemon zest or lemon juice. it is not absolutely necessary but it really enhances the taste of the dough. They will not tastes like lemon cookies but the drop of citrus adds a flavor element that puts these cookies on the next level. I highly recommend using the lemon.
- Add in flour and salt and a tiny bit of water if the dough is too stiff. I typically do not need to add water but if you feel your dough is too stiff add water a drop or two at a time until your dough is a good pliable consistency. Be careful not to add too much water to your Hamantaschen recipe or your dough will become to wet and squishy. Adding extra flour might dry up the water but the flour to other ingredients ratio will be off and your cookies won't taste so great.
- Gather your dough into a ball and cover in plastic or zip top bag and refrigerate a minimum of 2 hours but ideally overnight. Refrigerating helps the dough not spread as much while baking so you won't end up with flat hamentashen cookies.
- Once the dough has had time to chill take it out of the fridge. I like to let it sit out on the counter for about 30 minutes to warm up a bit so it's more pliable and easier to work with. While the dough is acclimating, get your filling ready. It's important to have you filling ready once you have rolled out the cookies as the cookie dough will start to dry out once it is exposed to air and dry dough will crack when you're trying to fold it into its signature triangle shape.
How to fill
- On a lightly floured surface use a rolling pin to flatten the dough to about ⅛ inch thickness. Use a biscuit cutter, circle cookie cutter, or rim of a drinking glass to cut out as many circles as you can and carefully transfer to lined baking sheet. You can gather the scraps and re-roll out the dough until it is depleted.
- The trick to filling hamentashen so they don't leak out all over the place is to remember that less is more. One teaspoon of filling is plenty.
- To create the signature triangle shape I essentially pick two sides of the circle and pinch to create a corner. As I pinch two sides are lifted guiding as to where the next pinched corner should go. Pinch three corners and voila, a folded triangle!
- Bake anywhere from 15-20 minutes depending on your oven and how "done" you like your hamentashen.
Filling Ideas For Making The Best Hamantaschen Recipe
- Fruit Jam
- Lemon curd
- Peanut butter
- Chocolate chips
- Apple pie filling
- Cherry pie filling
- Prune paste
- Poppy seed paste
- electric mixer
- cookie cutter
- Baking sheet
- ¾ cup non-dairy butter substitute
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice or lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 ¼ cup flour
- jam for filling
- Preheat oven to 350º F.
- Using an electric mixer, cream non-dairy butter substitute. Add in sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
- Beat in egg, lemon juice, vanilla, and salt.
- Stir in flour until combined and dough starts to come away from the bowl. Add a few drops of water if dough is too dry.
- Wrap dough in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours but ideally overnight.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out to ⅛ inch thickness.
- Cut out circles and transfer to baking sheet. Collect scraps and re-roll and cut out additional circles until dough is used up.
- Spoon 1 teaspoon of filling into center of circle and form into triangles.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until light brown.
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