Ok so let me tell you about something I really really hate: cream cheese. I hate cream cheese- I really really hate it- and I almost never use the word hate. I reserve it for things like cream cheese. I hate cheesecake, I hate cream cheese based dips, I hate cream cheese frosting on carrot cake (I love the cake part), and I really hate it on bagels (why ruin a perfectly good breakfast?). So this, my friends, is why I have never ever tasted rugelach before last night. I was so prejudiced against these beautiful cookies simply because the dough is made up of flour, butter, and you guessed it: cream cheese. But, I have great news! These cookies do not taste like cream cheese- even the cream cheese lovers in my life couldn't detect it's presence! Imagine all the years I've been missing out on these sweet little babies! The horror, the horror!
This week's Tuesdays with Dorie recipe was selected by Piggy of Piggy's Cooking Journal. Thank you piggy! You have allowed me to become a more accepting and loving individual! I can no longer say that I hate cream cheese (well at least not with the same passion that I used to). Dorie's recipe is very easy- it is a bit time consuming because you have to refrigerate the dough after you make it and then again after you form the cookies- but the effort is well worth results.
I went ahead and used almost the exact filling that Dorie recommends: bittersweet chocolate (I used dark chocolate), apricot jam, pecans, cinnamon sugar, and currants (I used golden raisins). I was a little unsure about combining the tartness of the apricot jam and currants with the sweetness of the cinnamon sugar and the chocolatiness of the chocolate- it seemed like a whole lot of flavors for one cookie- but my worries were unfounded. They turned out delicious! I think that I will expirement with the fillings the next time I make these, only because the chocolate overwhelmed the fruit a bit and completely covered up the cinnamon- so I might make some fruit, some cinnamon and pecan, and some chocolate and ground almond next time- just to be able to taste the flavors on their own. And now let me do a little shout out to my new best baking bud- SILICONE BAKING MAT!! How did I live without you for all of these years? You make baked on sugar and crystallized jam slide off a cookie sheet with a gentle nudge! Go out and buy one right now if you don't already have one!
And I leave you with this: All hail Queen Helen Mae! Baby who now awakens at 4:45 am each morning (thanks to Daylight Savings Time) and wishes to go down for a nap at approximately 6:00am!