Tag Archives: cookie

Purim Cookie: Haman’s Ears

They go by many names – and many spellings – but the Jewish festival of Purim has one standout sweet treat in this cookie.

Hamantaschen are triange-shaped cookies that can be filled with a variety of ingredients such as poppy seeds, prunes, dates, apricots, or even chocolate.

They get their name from the villain of the Purim story, Haman, who convinced the king of Persian to allow the murder of all the Jewish people in his kingdom. The Jewish people were saved by Esther, the king’s wife, who was also Jewish, although the king did not know this until she bravely came forward.

Here’s a recipe from JewishRecipes.org that you might like to try.

There are so many ways to make these cookies that the possibilities for filling, folding, and displaying them are nearly endless. Here are some ideas to get you started.

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I also found a great article in the New York Times about one woman’s history with Hamantaschen, and her quest to make the “perfect” Purim cookie. You might enjoy reading it here.

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Cookies 5: Fattigman

I know what you’re thinking. These cookies sound delicious – and they are.

But this Norwegian cookie actually mean’s “poor man’s cookie” because it is fried in cheap oil, not baked on a fancy cookie press like Norway’s “affluent” cookies, the goro (don’t worry; we’ll get there).

Of course, when I first heard about these cookies, I thought the name was Norwegian for “fat man.” Live and learn.

This recipe is from Tarteausucre, who posted it on Food.com.

Fattigman

Ingredients:

6 egg yolks

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup light cream

1 tablespoon butter, melted

1/3 cup granulated sugar

2 1/4 cups flour

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 tablespoon lemon rind, grated

confectioners’ sugar

  1. Beat together egg yolks and salt until thick and light.
  2. Beat in light cream, sugar and butter.
  3. Sift together flour and nutmeg. Add to egg yolk mixture with lemon rind.
  4. Mix well, then chill 1 hour.
  5. Roll out 1/4 of the dough at a time, keeping the remaining dough chilled.
  6. Roll 1/16 inch thick. Cut in 1 1/2-inch wide strips. Cut diagonally at 4-inch intervals. Make 1 inch slit lengthwise in center of each piece.
  7. Slip one end through the slit. Fry a few at a time in deep fat (350 degrees F) for 1 to 2 minutes or until golden.
  8. Remove from fat with a slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels.
  9. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar. Store in an airtight container.

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Cookies 4: Springerle

Springerle are a German rolled Christmas cookie. My great-grandmother made these cookies and my grandmother remembered them fondly.

Springerle means “little jumper” or “little knight” and it borrows its technique from that used to emboss designs on Christian bread. The different designs on springerle have evolved a little over the years.

Although they’re not labor-intensive, you do need a special rolling pin in order to make these cookies authentic.

My family no longer has my great-grandmother’s recipe, so I’m relying on this springerle recipe which was submitted to AllRecipes.com by Rosemarie Magee.

Springerle

Ingredients

 

4 eggs

2 tablespoons butter

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups white sugar

4 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup anise seed

Directions

 

Beat eggs in large mixing bowl until very light.

Add sugar and butter. Cream together until light and fluffy.

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt. Add dry ingredients and combine.

Knead dough until smooth … add more flour to get a smooth dough if necessary.

Cover dough and allow to chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

Roll onto slightly floured board to 1/2 inch thickness. Then roll again with springerle roller to make designs. Cut at border. Sprinkle anise seed on clean tea towel and place cookies on this. Allow to stand overnight (don’t cover) to dry.

Bake 12 to 15 minutes at 325 degrees F (170 degrees C).

Cool completely. Store in tight tin container … the longer they are stored, the more anise flavor they take up.

 

Springerle Roller

 

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Cookie Day is Coming!

 

One of my favorite new traditions as a mom is the introduction of “Cookie Day.”  On this most calorie-laden of days, all the ladies in my family (usually including – but not limited to – my mother, grandmother, aunt, sister-in-law, and sister, as well as our children who range in age from 5 years to 1 month) get together to bake and exchange cookies.

Usually, our choices are pretty standard.  My mother is known for her chocolate chip cookies (Nestle’s Toll House recipe) and her pizzelles. 

 

Pizzelles

Pizzelles

Pizzelles are a traditional Italian cookie that originates from the Abruzzo region of Italy.  It is popular among Italian families at Christmas, Easter, and weddings.  According to Wikipedia, it is one of the oldest cookies.  

Even though we are not even a little Italian, these delicate, anise-flavored cookies are a huge hit in our house. 

This year, I will be baking a ginger cookie (ginger is my new obsession) and attempting for the second year in a row Peanut Butter Blossoms.  Last year, I made a critical error that led to much mockery of my baking skills.  This year, I’m determined to erase that memory with a perfect cookie.Peanut Butter Blossoms

 

What cookies do you enjoy making during the holidays?  Does it have a special cultural significance for you and your family?

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