Saturday, September 15, 2012

Happy Rosh Hashanah: Pecan Rugelach

I have a love-hate relationship with rugelach.  I love to eat them, but I hate that they're traditionally made with walnuts.  So, that means if I want them, I'd need to bake them.  Fortunately, I'd like to bake!

Before we get there, you may ask, what is rugelach?   It's a rolled cookie of deliciousness.  Flavors you often see are chocolate, raspberry or apricot.

I've never attempted rugelach, but this Made Just Right Vegan Rugelach recipe inspired me.  It uses Earth Balance, vegan cream cheese and whole-wheat pastry flour for the dough.  The recipe gives the option to make apricot or chocolate rugelach.  When I asked my husband which one he wanted me to make for dinner at his grandmother's, he said both, so that's what I did.  He also said "You're not going to tell my family that they're vegan, right?"   I said "I don't have to . . ." which in me speak may end up being "I will wait until they tell me how delicious they are and then tell them!  Bwahahahaha!" 

The recipe suggests chilling the dough for two hours overnight, so I made the dough in my food processor last night and set my alarm to get up early this morning to bake them.  "You're getting up early, like a professional baker!" said husband.  Somewhere, my mother is reading this and asking "Who are you and what have you done with my hibernating daughter?"  A morning person I am not.  But, rugelach calls!  I even got up happily before the alarm went off. 

This morning, I made the filling, again using my food processor, halving the recipe amounts for each option.  For the apricot versions, I used Clearbrook Farms Apricot Preserves and pecans.  For the chocolate, I used Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Mini Chocolate Chips, pecans, cinnamon and Truvia, using the handy dandy Truvia conversion chart (Truvia being much sweeter than sugar, you don't need as much).

Rugelach, pre-baking
The dough is very sticky, so I used lots and lots of flour when rolling it out.  I realized that one of the reasons pie crust has been my nemesis is that I've been skimping on the flour.  So, let me paraphrase my mother, who, when I wrap gifts, often says "Don't skimp on the scotch tape!"  Don't skimp on the flour! (Hi, Mom - you're getting lots of shout outs today!  Want me to overnight you some rugelach?)

The apricot rugelach rolled easily enough, as the preserves acted like a glue.  The chocolate ones were a little more delicate, as the ingredients were entirely dry.  Have your baking sheet right next to your work area to minimize spills.

The recipe called for baking the rugelach for 20 minutes at 350, but our oven, for lack of a better word, sucks, so we went a little longer (three minutes or so).  I put them on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes or so, and then sliced them and let them cool for longer.  The chocolate sliced more easily than the apricot.

We did a quick taste test - both came out yummy, but I think I prefer the chocolate cinnamon.  We'll see what the family thinks tonight!

No comments:

Post a Comment