1½ teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
A traditional Jewish festival cookie, hamantaschen are often found in bakeries during the spring for Purim, but if you bake them at home, they can be a year-round treat. Shaped like pirate hats, hamantaschen have a simple dough, but its real magic lies in its filling. Every baker has her own secret recipe, which are usually passed down through families. While some fillings may be more traditional than others, experimentation with flavor profiles is never frowned upon, with bakers turning them into tiny cannolis and pies.
Our hamantaschen are filled with homemade blackberry-strawberry jam and dried cranberries, a mixture that’s sweet, tart and brilliantly bright red. It’s a real eye catcher at a potluck or a bake sale.
Step One. The dry ingredients
In a medium bowl, whisk together four cups flour, salt and baking powder.
Step Two. The wet ingredients
Beat together butter and sugar until it is light and fluffy. Using an electric mixer, this should take about five minutes on medium-high speed. If you are doing this by hand, it may take longer. Once finished, combine the eggs. Add one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl and thoroughly combing the mixture together.
Step Three. Combine the ingredients
Slowly and at a reduced speed, add the dry ingredients until the dough forms. Divide dough into two ¾”-thick disks. Cover and chill for at least for hours.
Step Four. Preparing the filling
In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the homemade blackberry-strawberry jam and dried cranberries. Allow the jam to reduce while the cranberries hydrate. When the jam has thickened into a filling consistency, remove from heat and allow to come to room temperature.
Step Five. Setting the stage
Preheat oven to 350° F. Remove one half of the hamantaschen dough from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature. This will help prevent cracking later during folding.
Step Six. Cutting out the cookies
On a lightly floured surface, roll out down to a ¼” thickness. Cut into 3 ½” rounds with a cookie cutter or a wide-mouthed glass. Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets.
Step Seven. Filling the cookies
Place 1½ – 2 teaspoons filling into the center of each cookie. Fold the sides up to a triangle, like a pirate’s hat, pinching along the points to seal them. Leave the center of the cookie open to show the filling.
Step Nine. Bake the cookies
Bake cookies for 18 – 22 minutes until bottoms are golden brown. Halfway through, rotate baking sheets for even baking.
Hamantaschen are great for gifts. They can be individually wrapped in tiny, plastic bags and ribbon, or they can be incorporated into a cookie platter. For an added touch, some home bakers dust the cookies with confectioner’s sugar for decoration and a hint of sweetness.