Hamantashen

by Hannah Kaminsky
A pinkish purple counter holding two glasses of wine and a red and white floral plate holding 8 fruit-filled hamentashen pastries arranged in a wreath.

Soft and tender, these cookies are far better than the dry triangles sold in supermarkets these days. Jazz them up with any fruit preserves or jams you like!


Ingredients

¾ cup vegetable shortening or vegan butter
½ cup granulated organic sugar
3 tablespoons smooth cashew butter
3 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 + ¼ cups all-purpose flour
Jam or preserves of your choice (see Notes)


Instructions
  1. Using a stand or hand mixer, thoroughly cream together the shortening or vegan butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the cashew butter, followed by the orange juice and vanilla extract.
  2. Mix the baking powder together with the flour, and then slowly incorporate the dry mix in until it forms a ball. It might take a bit of time, but don’t be tempted to add any more liquid; it just needs a little persuasion. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour before proceeding.
  3. Once the dough is completely chilled, preheat your oven to 375 degrees and line two cookie sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. You will probably want to coat the dough itself lightly with additional flour, and if it becomes too finicky to roll out without sticking, toss it back into the fridge for a few minutes.
  5. Cut out circles of about 3 inches in diameter with either a cookie cutter or drinking glass. Move the circles onto your prepared baking sheets, and spoon a small mound of filling onto the center of each circle, about 1 tablespoon each.
  6. Pull up the sides of the circle in order to form a triangle, and pinch the corners firmly so that they don’t separate or fall down during baking. If you’re really concerned about them staying in shape, you can freeze them just prior to baking and move them directly into the oven from there.
  7. Bake for 8 – 10 minutes, until lightly golden brown but still rather pale. Allow them to sit on the baking sheet for a few minutes before sliding the silicone mats or parchment onto a cool surface.

Notes
  1. For the jam in this batch, I just went through my fridge and used up whatever I could find. Some are strawberry, cherry, guava, and yellow plum preserves. Anything you like is just fine! It would never hurt to throw in a few chocolate chips, too.
  2. Find more of Hannah’s recipes at Bittersweet Blog and follow her on Instagram.

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