Purim has always been one of my favorites out of the many, many Jewish holidays. Dressing up in fun costumes, masks, festive food and drinks. What’s not to love? One of my fondest memories growing up was attending out synagogue’s annual Purim Carnival. They went all out with games, face paint, and prizes all to celebrate Esther saving the Jews from Haman’s plans of extermination. Of course, as a young foodie, one of my favorite parts was the carnival-themed food. While others went straight for the popcorn or cotton candy, I was all about the build your own ice cream sundae bar. Oh my. I piled on scoops of strawberry, vanilla and chocolate, rainbow sprinkles and a cherry or two.
Hamantaschen, the symbolic Purim cookie, are a great base for all sorts of flavors. I’ve made Chocolate Dipped Hamantaschen, Hamantaschen Tarts and even Caramelized Onion Hamantaschen. But when it came time to recreate a version this year, I reminisced about my favorite ice cream flavors and went with Neapolitan. A strawberry cookie filled with chocolate and drizzled with vanilla. Why should kids have all the fun?
¾ cup sugar
2 ¾ cups flour, sifted
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 stick butter, room temperature
½ tsp vanilla
1 egg plus 1 for egg wash
Red food coloring if desired
Zest of 1 orange
1 cup chocolate nut butter, homemade or store bought
½ cup powdered sugar
few drops vanilla extract
Combine the dry ingredients: sugar, flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.
Meanwhile, puree strawberries in a food processer until blended.
Then add in the wet ingredients to the dry: butter, vanilla, 1 egg, pureed strawberries and orange zest and combine well with a mixer. If the dough is sticky, add a bit more flour. If it is dry add a bit of water. Form dough into a large ball and chill for at least one hour or up to overnight.
When you are ready to make your hamantaschen, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and roll out the dough on a floured surface until it is 1/8 – 1/4 inch thick. Use a 3-inch circle cookie cutter to cut circles in the dough. The top of a wine glass works too! Roll out the scraps and recut into circles.
Then take a teaspoon of the nut butter and put it in the center of each circle. Don’t add any more- the filling will spread to fill the cookie, and anymore would just run over the top making for an ugly hamantaschen.
Fold two sides together overlapping at the bottom, and then fold the top down and secure.
Use the white of the last egg as an egg wash to give the hamantaschen shine and help it hold its shape. Then bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.
Allow cookies to cool.
Mix powdered sugar with vanilla extract and enough water to get a thick glaze. Drizzle over hamantaschen, let harden and enjoy!
Pronounced: PUR-im, the Feast of Lots, Origin: Hebrew, a joyous holiday that recounts the saving of the Jews from a threatened massacre during the Persian period.