Jam and walnuts rugelach cookies are perfect for making all year round for holidays, parties, or potlucks. They are easy to make, easy to serve, and delicious.
I was thinking that if I were going to make the world a better place, I would do it with cookies. Everyone loves cookies. They bring joy when we have a sweet tooth or a heartache. 🙂
What is a rugelach?
Traditional rugelach are cookies made in a crescent form by rolling a triangle of dough filled with different ingredients.
The filling could be any jam. It could be only nuts, chocolate spread, or Turkish delight. The fillings are versatile and vary from country to country.
These little delicious cookies are one of the many memories of my childhood.
The "rugelach" name seems to come from the European Jewish communities, but it is, in fact, a trendy dessert all over Eastern Europe.
If you travel to Transylvania, the dough is made with sour cream, sometimes lard, while in other parts of Romania, people use yeast or farmer cheese, etc.
The cookies are easy to make, melt in your mouth, and you will not be able to stop eating after just one or two. Goodbye, diet, goodbye common sense! THEY. ARE. DELICIOUS!
Over the years, I tried multiple recipes that use different ingredients, from lard to margarine and butter, yeast to yogurt, and baking soda. There are so many recipes out there that I had to try some of them.
Recently, while I was looking through the books and recipes I have all over my house, I found this old recipe I totally forgot about. A pastry dough made with farmer cheese. Yes, you are reading correctly, farmer cheese!
You can easily make Farmer cheese at home, so don't think you cannot make the cookies if you don't have any cheese.
In the past, I used to make this dough all the time because it is versatile and easy to make.
You can use the dough for anything. Romanians make pies with it, cookies, pastries, etc.
The dough will not stick to your hands, it is easy to work with, and the final result is a flaky delicious product that will make you beg for more.
This particular type of dough uses equal amounts of flour, farmer cheese, and butter.
The recipe works for sweet or savory pastries, as you can either add sugar or salt to it, based on what you plan to make.
How to make the jam and walnuts rugelach
Mix the soft butter, farmer cheese, flour, pinch of salt, and one tablespoon of sugar in a bowl. It would help if you ended up with something like this:
Cover the bowl and refrigerate it for a few hours or until the next day.
When ready to make the cookies, remove the dough from the refrigerator, and take out the jams and some chopped walnuts(optional).
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Roll out the dough over a lightly floured surface, giving it a round shape, like a small pizza.
I used a pizza cutter to slice the dough. The idea is to have triangles of dough that will be filled with jam and then rolled.
Depending on how big you want to make the rugelach cookies, cut the dough into bigger or smaller triangles.
The rugelach cookies in Romania are tiny. Basically, they are the size of one bite. The ones I saw in the United States are definitely bigger than the Romanian ones.
Place a dollop of jam and a small piece of walnut (optional) on the bottom of one of your triangles.
Note: There is another technique I learned later in life, which might be easier: After you roll out the dough, spread the jam on the entire surface and sprinkle chopped walnuts.
Loosely roll up the cookie and place it on the cookie tray covered with parchment paper.
Whatever method you use for this particular step is up to you. There is no right or wrong.
Continue doing this with all your triangles until done.
Bake the cookies at 350F for about 13-15 mins or until golden brown.
Remove the cookies from the tray and place them on a cooling rack.
Prepare a bowl or a plate with powdered sugar. When cookies are cool, toss them in the powdered sugar, then place them on a platter.
They are absolutely delicious and super easy to make.
Can I freeze the dough and use it later?
Yes, I did this numerous times in the past. You make a batch or more and use what you need. You can freeze the rest. The dough should be good for about 3 months in the freezer.
Can I freeze the baked cookies?
Yes, I do not see why not. Place them in an airtight container before you put them in the freezer.
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Jam And Walnuts Rugelach Cookies
- 2 sticks PLUS 5 tablespoons soft unsalted butter
- 1 ½ cups farmer cheese or ricotta
- 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
- a pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 4-5 tablespoons powdered sugar
For the filling:
- 13 ounces Fruit Jam I used apricot jam and blackcurrant- you can use strawberry, raspberry, plums, apple
- ¼ cup Chopped walnuts optional
- Mix the soft butter, farmer cheese, flour, pinch of salt, and one tablespoon of sugar to obtain a dough.
- Wrap in plastic foil and place the dough in the refrigerator to chill for an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Remove the dough out of the refrigerator and roll it over a floured surface, giving it a round shape, about 13 inches big.
- Use a pizza cutter to slice the dough. The idea is to have triangles of dough that will be filled with jam and then rolled. Cut about 16 triangles.
- Put a dollop of jam and a small piece of walnut(optional) on the bottom of one of the triangles.
- Loosely roll-up.
- Place the cookie on a baking tray covered with parchment paper.
- Continue doing this with all your triangles until done.
- Bake them at 350F for about 13-15 mins or until golden brown.
- Remove them from the tray and place them on a cooling rack.
- Prepare a plate or a bowl with powdered sugar and roll the cookies in it to cover.