Mmm hamantaschen. In this part of the hemisphere, hamantaschen is probably the most recognizable symbol of Purim. These three-cornered pastries are usually stuffed with jams and sweet pastes of various flavours. My favourite base recipe comes from Joan Nathan’s Jewish Cooking in America,however my own twist is to use a filling of traditional ‘set fruit‘, combined with some chopped apples. This gives the hamantaschen a lovely rummy aroma, with the intense taste of Black Cake that is so familiar of Trinis of all ages, shapes and sizes.
Sarina’s Rum and Raisin Hamantaschen
Adapted from a recipe in Jewish Cooking in America
1 1/2 cups ‘set fruit‘
1/4 apple with peel
Juice and rind of 1/2 lemon
2 tbsp. sugar
2/3 cup margarine or butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 to 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
Dash of salt
Pulse the set fruit and apple in a food processor. Add the lemon juice and rind and sugar and mix well.
Cream the margarine or butter with the sugar. Add the egg and vanilla and continue creaming until smooth. A food processor is great for this.
Add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Process until a ball of dough is formed.
Chill for 2 to 3 hours, or overnight.
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Take one fourth of the dough and roll out on a lightly floured board to a thickness of 1/8″. Cut into 2-1/2″ circles. With your finger, brush water around the rim of the circle. Drop 1 tsp. of filling in the center. Then bring the dough around the filling and press 3 ends together.
Bake in a 375°F oven on a well-greased cookie sheet for 10 to 15 minutes or until the tops are golden.