I apologize that things have been so quiet around here lately. It's not for a lack of baking, but a lack of time to blog about it. I'm hoping to have time to play catch up now that I will be off work starting on Thursday.
I have wanted to make rugelach for quite some time but never got my act together to do it. I decided to make it as something to eat while decorating cookies on Sunday. I had been thinking I would use Dorie Greenspan's recipe but when it called for a food processor (which I do not yet have...it's on my Christmas list), I decided to look around and found Ina Garten's recipe. It looked less fussy, so I tried it out. The rugelach was soooo good fresh from the oven, but I was dissapointed with how well it kept. Perhaps Dorie's would be better. I'll have to try it in the new year because I will definitely be working to find the perfect rugelach.
I made a few changes based on personal preference. I used apricot preserves for most of my rugelach but did try one batch with raspberry. I also added chopped chocolate and used pecans instead of walnuts. Here is the original recipe, but I would feel free to jazz it up using your favourite spices, nuts and jams!
by Ina Garten (here)
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2-pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar plus 9 tablespoons
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 cup raisins
1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup apricot preserves, pureed in a food processor
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk, for egg wash
Cream the cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light. Add 1/4 cup granulated sugar, the salt, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour and mix until just combined. Dump the dough out onto a well-floured board and roll it into a ball. Cut the ball in quarters, wrap each piece in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
To make the filling, combine 6 tablespoons of granulated sugar, the brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, the raisins, and walnuts.
On a well-floured board, roll each ball of dough into a 9-inch circle. Spread the dough with 2 tablespoons apricot preserves and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the filling. Press the filling lightly into the dough. Cut the circle into 12 equal wedges—cutting the whole circle in quarters, then each quarter into thirds. Starting with the wide edge, roll up each wedge. Place the cookies, points tucked under, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Chill for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Brush each cookie with the egg wash. Combine 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon and sprinkle on the cookies. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove to a wire rack and let cool.