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5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

One hundred and twenty three. That’s how many triangular little cookies I shaped since yesterday. No, I have not gone insane. First of all, compulsive acts of baking on my part are not exactly a rare sight in the Graceful residence. And second of all… It’s nearly Purim! Purim is probably the happiest holiday in the Jewish calendar. Kids and grownups in costumes, people giving yummy packages to each other, and everyone acting just a little bizarre and upside-down. It’s kind of like this scene from the Hunchback of Notre Dame, only less creepy.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

These triangular sugar cookies are a traditional Purim treat. The Jewish or Jewish-smart of you may recognize these as Hamentashen. As you may or may not have noticed, I have a love-hate relationship with the dying Yiddish language, so I don’t call them that. I call them by their Hebrew name, Ozney Haman (literally means “Haman’s ears”… Gross much?) and for the sake of this English-speaking blog I will refer to them as Purim cookies. Yay!

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Purim cookies are traditionally stuffed with a poppy seed filling. Poppy seed filling is one of those love-‘em-or-hate-‘em things in life, and too many children are scarred into hating it every year because of its annoying tendency of looking like chocolate filling and then disappointing.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

For those of you who have never tried poppy-filling, please do not expect chocolate, so as to give it a fair chance of being liked.

For those of you who already hate it – have no fear! As I said, I have been in the kitchen for literally a day and a half making these, and after careful research and experimentation I came up with four alternative fillings for the Purim cookies!

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

I chose to make these mini-sized because it is much cuter that way, I can put them in many more packages for more friends to enjoy, and this way you can try every single flavor without feeling like you just ate too many cookies.

So what are we waiting for? To the kitchen!

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Mini Purim Cookies

Serves: Makes about 50 mini cookies

Estimated Time: 1 hour prep, 13 minute bake

Kosher Classification: Dairy

Ingredients:

For dough:

2.5 cups flour (I used 70% whole wheat)
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup sugar
Lemon zest from half a lemon

150 grams butter, cut into small cubes

2 large eggs
Less than 1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

For Poppy Seed Filling: (Fills about 25 cookies)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup fresh ground poppy seeds
2 Tbs honey or date-honey
1 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs

For Marzipan Filling: (Fills about 25 cookies)
1 cup raw marzipan (almond paste)
1 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs

For Rose-Pistachio Filling: (Fills about 25 cookies)
1 cup raw, shelled pistachios
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp rosewater
1/4 cup water
1 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs

For Apricot Jam Filling: (Fills about 25 cookies)
1/2 cup apricot jam
2 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs

For Tahini Filling: (Fills about 25 cookies)
1/2 cup raw tahini
1/4 cup honey or date honey
2 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs

Method:

Prepare the dough. In a bowl or food processor, mix all dry ingredients (flour, almond meal, sugar, and lemon zest). Add the cubes of cold butter and rub everything between your fingers until it reaches a crumbly, sandy texture. If this is your first time making Pate Sucrée, prepare to feel your thumb muscles for the first time. If you have a food processor, you can just process with a few pulses (no more than ten 2-second pulses).

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

In a cup, whisk together the eggs, vanilla extract, and milk, and add the eggy mixture to the crumbly one. Mix or process until it gets clumpy – be careful not to over-process the dough or it will yield a harder, breadier texture that does not flatter these cookies.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Pour out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and depending on the size of your working area, divide into either three or four batches. Shape each batch into disc and wrap in plastic wrap, then put them all in the fridge to chill for about 30 minutes.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

In the meantime, you can prepare the filling (or fillings) of your choice. The classic filling is, as I said, poppy seed. It is important to use ground poppy seeds (not the whole ones used to garnish breads), and it is really important that they are freshly ground – they spoil in no time if not kept in the freezer under many layers of tied bags, so the kind you buy in a bag at the store has probably already gone bad. Luckily for me, I live in Jerusalem where there is an amazing outdoor market with a spice-store I have taken quite a liking to. My spice guy can grind pretty much anything in the store (bean flours galore!) so I am set. Look for poppy seeds in the bulk section of supermarkets, where they often have grinders you can use to grind things on the spot.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

In a small saucepan over low heat, simmer the heavy cream until almost boiling. Add the honey or date honey and stir well. Finally, add the ground poppy seeds and stir. Let cool, and then stir in the biscuit crumbs.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Once the dough has finished chilling, take one batch out of the plastic wrap and onto your lightly floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll it out into a thin sheet. Roll forwards, backwards, right and left, then lift the dough a bit to prevent it from sticking. Repeat until you have a thin sheet of dough. If things get sticky  (and they probably will), dust some more flour on your rolling pin, the surface, or even the dough itself, as necessary.

Using a 2-inch diameter round cookie cutter (or just a cup with a rim of that size), cut out circles of dough. Pick up the rest of the dough into a ball – you will use it later to make more circles.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

In the center of each circle, spoon a bit of filling (between half a teaspoon to one teaspoon).

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Then, using both hands, squeeze three edges of the circle into a triangle. Now, I realize that geometrically speaking, that last sentence makes absolutely no sense… So here is my visual aid:

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Place cookies  on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and keep in the fridge to chill some more while preheating the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (which are 350 degrees Fahrenheit).

Once it’s hot enough, transfer cookies to oven and bake for 12-14 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are golden brown. Let cool until cookies harden.

These will keep for about a week in a tightly sealed box.

If you have leftover dough, keep it! It keeps well in the freezer for a couple of months and can be taken out and used for pie crust, thumb cookies, or simple sugar cookies whenever you want!

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for (or at least those of you who hate the poppy seed filling)… The alternative fillings:

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Marzipan Filling:

Marzipan is basically almond paste, which is basically almonds and sugar. You can get it at specialty baking stores, or even in a can in the supermarket. I actually made my own  Marzipan for these cookies… I will post the recipe soon.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

For the marzipan filling, just mix 1 cup raw marzipan (almond paste) with a tablespoon of the biscuit crumbs.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Rose-Pistachio Filling:

Have you ever used rose water? I think it’s a must in every household pantry. It keeps forever and makes things taste so special. You can get it at a natural foods store or an ethnic store (be sure to get rose water and not rose water extract, which has a high alcohol content and can taste harsh).

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

In the food processor, process the pistachios and sugar into a fine meal. In a cup, mix the lemon juice, rosewater, and water. Dump the pistachio meal into a bowl and add the lemon-rose mix little by little, stirring it in until it reaches the consistency of grainy peanut butter. You may not need to use all of the lemon-rose water. Stir in the tea biscuit crumbs.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Apricot Jam Filling:

Mr. Graceful requested this one, and it is by far the easiest to prepare. Simply stir the biscuit crumbs into the apricot jam and voila!

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Honey-Tahini Filling:

Come on, you didn’t really think I could do a five-filling cookie post without one of them involving tahini, did you? Of course you didn’t. We already know that tahini bakes well, so we are going to employ a similar strategy here.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

Mix the tahini and honey or date honey together until it reaches a thick, peanut butter consistency. Stir in biscuit crumbs. By the by, this mixture (minus the crumbs) is great as a spread on toasted bread, especially for an energy-pumped, pre-run snack.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

In-A-Nutshell:

  1. Mix 2.5 cups flour, 1/2 cup almond meal, 3/4 cup sugar, and lemon zest together.
  2. Add 150 g butter cubes and pulse in food processor or rub vigorously through fingers until a crumbly texture is reached.
  3. Whisk 2 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1/2- cup milk separately and add to crumbly mix. Process until it has a mealy texture.
  4. Divide into 3 or 4 parts, form a disc, wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.
  5. Take dough out of fridge and onto lightly floured baking surface. Roll out until thin.
  6. Using a 2-inch diameter cup or cookies cutter, cut out circles.
  7. Drop anywhere between 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp filling (recipes below) in the center of each circle.
  8. Using both hands, squeeze the dough into a triangular shape.
  9. Chill in refrigerator while oven preheats to 180 Celsius (350 Fahrenheit).
  10. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the cookies are golden at the edges.

Classic Filling:

  1. In a small saucepan over low heat, simmer 1/2 cup heavy cream.
  2. Stir in 2 Tbs honey or date honey.
  3. Stir in 1 cup ground poppy seeds.
  4. Let cool and stir in 1 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs.

Marzipan Filling:

  1. Combine 1 cup raw marzipan (almond paste) with 1 heaping Tbs tea-biscuit crumbs.

Rose-Pistachio Filling:

  1. Process 1 cup raw shelled pistachios into a fine meal.
  2. Add 1/4 cup sugar and keep processing until mixed.
  3. In a cup, mix 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp rose water, and 1/4 cup water.
  4. Transfer pistachio meal to a bowl and add lemon-rose mixture little by little until it is wet enough.

Apricot Jam Filling:

  1. Mix 1 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs into 1/2 cup apricot jam.

Honey-Tahini Filling:

  1. Mix 1/2 cup raw tahini with 1/4 cup honey or date honey, until thick.
  2. Stir in 1 heaping Tbs. tea-biscuit crumbs.

5-Flavor Purim Cookies | The Graceful Kitchen

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7 thoughts on “For the Love of Triangles! or: 5-Flavor Mini Purim Cookies

  • February 21, 2013 at 8:21 pm
    Permalink

    עדי מתוקה! הבלוג והמתכונים מקסימים, והתמונות נהדרות! עוגיות הפירות היבשים ומתכוני הטחינה לא הספיקו להגיע לקופסאות, ונעלמו בדרך… המשיכי בכיף, ודש חם לשניכם, יעל

    Sent from my iPad

    Reply
    • February 21, 2013 at 8:54 pm
      Permalink

      תודה רבה! שמחה שאתם נהנים מהמתכונים… ד”ש חזרה :)

      Reply
  • February 22, 2013 at 3:43 am
    Permalink

    מקסים!!! איזה יופי של עוגיות! אהבתי את הרעיון לעשות אותן קטנות, ואהבתי את השם שנתת להן. נראה נפלא! והתמונות פשוט משגעות! עוגיות מתוקות של ילדה מתוקה! ♥ לא נשאר לנו אלא לחכות שתכיני לנו מהן ☺ כל הכבוד!

    Reply
    • February 22, 2013 at 7:08 am
      Permalink

      תודה מאמא, היה לי ממש כיף להכין אותן, ואנחנו כנראה ננשנש אותן לצד הקפה של הבוקר גם אחרי שאארוז את מיליון משלוחי המנות שלי :)

      Reply
  • February 22, 2013 at 10:08 am
    Permalink

    These look amazing! I wish I hadn’t just made 150+ oznei haman last night… well, I don’t really wish that. But I wish I could make yours, too! Also, Joey’s going to kill you because every time I read your posts I want to buy a food processor. Chag sameach and see you soon!

    Reply
    • February 22, 2013 at 10:47 am
      Permalink

      I love that you also made a ton! Makes me feel normal :)
      Yeah I feel like ever since I got Elvis (yes I named my food-processor) I’ve become very “mefuneket” :)
      Chag sameach to you, too… I miss you guys!

      Reply
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