There are so many different recipes for hamentashen that pop up into social media feeds at this time of year – I recently saw one using bagel dough and smoked salmon with cream cheese as a filling! I am more of a traditionalist, sticking to jam and sometimes deviating to chocolate. This is the recipe I use at home and also in the Kitchen Garden classes I teach. If you can let go of the idea of triangular perfection in your hamentashen, this is a fantastic recipe to let kids get involved in. The dough is very simple, everything just goes into a food processor. It needs about 10 minutes in the fridge to firm up before rolling. The easiest way to roll is between two sheets of baking paper – this ensures the dough doesn’t stick to the rolling pin. If the cup sticks when cutting the circles, simply dip the rim in some flour before pressing into the dough. I made this batch with my 4 year old daughter and some of her friends and I omitted the poppy seeds, simply because I was out of them. Usually I add them for a speckled looking dough. The key to good hamentashen is to actually lift the dough and pinch it tightly into a triangle (rather than pulling into the shape). If using chocolate, make sure the dough is curled up and pinched over and around the chocolate so the triangle is sealed and the chocolate melts and oozes inside rather than burns from exposure to the oven heat.
3 cups plain flour
1 teaspoons baking powder
150g butter, softened
1 (heaped) cup of sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon orange zest
3 tablespoons of orange juice
2 eggs (plus 1 extra egg, lightly beaten for brushing the hamentashen before baking)
2 tablespoons of poppy seeds (optional)
Jam (I like the Bonne Maman strawberry or raspberry) or chocolate pieces
Preheat oven to 180C. Line baking trays with baking paper.
Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and mix to form a ball.
(If it looks too wet, add flour, if it looks too dry, add a little more orange juice).
Roll out the dough between two sheets of baking paper to 5mm.
Use a glass or a cup to cut out circles.
Place a half a teaspoon of jam in the centre of each circle of dough, then lift and pinch each corner to form a triangle around the filling.
Brush the hamentashen with eggwash and place on the lined baking trays.
Bake for 12-15 minutes until a light golden brown and allow to cool on wire racks.