Picture of Hamantaschen
Russian-Israeli-American style Hamantaschen. Photo: Marina Prints
Recipe

Russian-Israeli-American Hamantaschen

A simple, winning recipe for perfect hamantaschen - the secret is in the fillings, which represent a combination of Russian-Israeli-American cultures

This recipe is the result of a lot of trial and error. It started with the fact that I wanted to do something to connect my children, Jonathan and David, to their Israeli background (their father and I met each other in Israel, and moved to the USA together before they were born). So I organized a hamantaschen party – I invited all their friends, bought Hashachar chocolate spread and strawberry jam, and waited for the guests.

The party was a hit, but I quickly realized that local kids needed options – and that Hashachar Chocolate spread was less attractive than Nutella. Since then I have organized this hamantaschen party every year, with 20+ children, and the selection of fillings has only grown.

There are the options I know from my mother and grandmother – strawberry, plum and apricot jams. There are the Israeli fillings – chocolate and date puree. To these we also added American fillings – marshmallow, chocolate chips and variations of all kinds.

So today, my Hamantaschen are a true Russian-Israeli-American mix of cultures, just like my children.

Picture of Hamantaschen
Russian-Israeli-American style Hamantaschen. Photo: Marina Prints

Ingredients for Hamantaschen

For the dough:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 cup sunflower oil or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour + 1/4 cup for rolling out
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt

Fillings:

  • 1 cup apricot jam (or strawberry, prune butter, halva, Nutella, chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, ground walnuts or any other filling of your choice)

Instructions

Prepare the dough:

  • 1. Heat the oven to 355F (180C) degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

  • 2. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar. Add the oil and vanilla extract, and mix till combined.

  • 3. In a large bowl, sift together 2 cups of flour with baking powder and salt.

  • 4. Add the egg mixture into the dry flour mixture, and mix to combine.

Roll out the dough:

  • 5. Clean and dry a counter, or a large cutting board. Dust the surface, and your rolling pin, with flour. Roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4-inch (3/4 cm).

  • 6. Using a glass or a cookie cutter, cut circles of dough.

For the filling:

  • 7. Add no more than a teaspoon of your favorite filling in the center of each circle. If you fill too much, your cookies will open and spill during baking. Fold the sides inward into a triangle shape and pinch well on all sides.

Bake:

  • 8. Place the hamantaschen on the prepared baking sheets with about 3/4-inch (2 cm) between cookies. Bake on the middle rack for no more than 12 minutes. Do not overbake - the hamantaschen should not be brown, but still very pale when you pull the tray out of the oven.

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My favorite filling ideas:

Chunky apricot or strawberry jam

Prune butter (lekvar)

Halva spread

Nutella

3-4 chocolate chips and 1-2 mini marshmallows

Dried apricots or prunes ground in a food processor or meat grinder with walnuts

 

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