This recipe comes from the most unlikely of places...the back of a Bible study workbook. Our women's Bible study group at church just finished Beth Moore's study on the book of Esther. Appropriately for the subject, the study ended with this cookie recipe. This pastry is enjoyed as part of the celebration of Purim. Anyone who wants to celebrate God's deliverance can join in and partake.
Throughout the Bible study, I knew the recipe was in the back and I intended to try it. Then, on the last night, one of the women in the group brought in some to share. She had used the Bible study recipe. They were delicious. Oh, my. A buttery crunch at the edges, soft towards the middle, and then an explosion of flavor at the center. These cookies are very good.
My intention was to wait until after Thanksgiving and make these as one of the few Christmas cookies I will make this year. I only lasted two days after tasting them. My attempts at freezing half of them (the recipe makes a lot) have gone down the drain. Jamey and I cannot keep our hands out.
Haman's Ears (Hamantashen, from Beth Moore's Study on Esther)
makes 3 dozen or so
make dough the night before if you can
2 sticks butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
4 tsp. baking powder
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups white all-purpose flour
fruit preserves or butters (traditionally poppy seed and prune, but any will do)
Cut butter into sugar (using mixer) and blend thoroughly. Add eggs, vanilla and beat well. Add baking powder and then flours 1/2 cup at a time, blending thoroughly between each. Put the batter in the fridge for a few hours or overnight. Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut out circles using a cookie cutter or drinking glass (diameter should be at least 3 inches). Put 1 tsp.-1 tbsp. of preserves or fruit butter in the center of each circle.
Fold in three sides to form a triangle, overlapping the sides as much as possible so only a little filling shows through the center. Pinch the end (points) closed. Bake on greased baking sheets for about 10-15 minutes at 375 degrees or until lightly browned.
My notes: If you're unable (or unwilling) to let the dough chill for several hours before forming cookies, place the cookie sheets holding the unbaked cookies in the fridge for 10 minutes before baking. This helps the cookies hold their shape versus flattening out when baked. I used strawberry jam, peach jam and apple butter for the fillings. They freeze very well.