February 25, 2010
My mother's hamantaschen, but filled with Nutella
Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes, plus chilling time
Servings: About 3 dozen cookies
Note: Three-cornered hamantaschen, the quintessential Purim cookie representing Haman's pocket, his hat or his ear (depending on whom you ask), is traditionally stuffed with poppy seed or dried fruit fillings. However, in recent years, mothers in Israel and elsewhere have discovered that given the choice, any kid — and not a small showing of adults too — will choose hamantaschen filled with Nutella hazelnut-chocolate spread, hands down. The dough will be soft and slightly sticky, but it will firm up after chilling. Don't be tempted to work with too much flour, or the baked cookies will be too hard.
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
1 1/2 tablespoons Cognac or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 1/4 cups (13.8 ounces) unbleached flour, plus additional for rolling out
About 1/2 cup Nutella
1. In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat eggs until lemon-colored. Beat in sugar, oil and Cognac. Gradually stir in the baking powder and flour, mixing on low speed until a soft dough is formed. Add an additional tablespoon or two of flour if necessary.
2. Using a rubber spatula, transfer the dough to a large piece of waxed or parchment paper and form it into a fat cylinder shape. Close up the corners and chill until firm, at least 2 to 3 hours (can be chilled overnight).
3. Heat the oven to 350 degrees, and line 2 to 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
4. Divide the dough into 3 pieces. Put 1 section on a lightly floured surface, and chill the others. Knead lightly just until the dough is smooth enough to roll out. Lightly flour a rolling pin and roll out the dough to a scant one-fourth-inch thick.
5. Using a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter or a glass with a thin rim, cut rounds, and place them on the prepared cookie sheets. Place a rounded half-teaspoon of Nutella in the center of each. Pinch the sides together to form a triangle, leaving the filling exposed in the center. Pick up scraps and form another ball. Repeat until all dough is used.
6. Transfer to the prepared cookie sheet, spacing the cookies about an inch apart on the sheet and bake until just lightly browned, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Each cookie: 106 calories; 2 grams protein; 15 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 4 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 12 mg. cholesterol; 6 grams sugar; 33 mg. sodium.