web analytics

Archive | dessert RSS feed for this section


Rugalach (other spellings: rugulach, ruggalach, rogelach, rugalah, rugala) is a Jewish pastry and the name is a Yiddish diminutive form of the Hebrew meaning “creeping vine” perhaps because of the rolled-up shape of the cookie.  It can be made with a cream cheese dough, though the dough is more typically pareve (no dairy ingredients), so that it can be eaten with or after a meat meal and still be kosher. The different fillings can include raisins, walnuts, cinnamon, chocolate, marzipan, poppy seed or apricot preserves which are rolled up inside. Rugelach is a traditional Jewish food that is eaten any time of year, including, but not limited to Shabbat. It is not traditional on Hanukkah because it is not fried in oil.  Serve these warm for maximum enjoyment.

Makes 48
recipe from Canadian Living
print this recipe

2 cups flour
1/2 cup icing sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup cold butter
250g cream cheese, chilled
3/4 cup apricot jam
1 egg
1/3 cup chopped almonds (optional)

Place flour, salt and icing sugar in a food processor and whirl until mixed.  Cut butter and cream cheese into small cubes.  Add to flour and pulse just until dough starts to come together.  Form dough into 3 balls then flatten into discs.  Wrap separately with cling film and refrigerate 30 minutes or up to 5 days (freeze up to 1 month).  Remove dough from fridge and let stand until soft enough to roll.  Preheat oven to 180c (350f).  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place apricot jam in a bowl and microwave until its easy to spread (30 seconds or less).

On a lightly floured surface, using a rolling pin, roll 1 disc into 30cm (12 inch) circle.  Spread 1/4 cup of jam evenly over the rolled out dough.  Cut into 16 wedges.  Beginning at wide end, tightly roll dough wedge up toward the point.  Places crescents on baking sheet 2 inches apart.  In a small bowl whisk egg and lightly brush over cookie.  Then sprinkle with almonds (optional).  Bake until golden 15 to 20 minutes.  Cool and store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to 1 week or freeze up to 1 month.

The Culinary Chase’s Note:  This was my first time making these and I have to say these little beauties are a definite repeater!  Experiment with different flavorings and enjoy the outcome.  Instead of using almonds, I sprinkled sugar on top of the egg wash before baking. I had some jam left over so I lightly brushed some the tops of the cookies with the jam followed by a sprinkling of sugar before baking.  Use a pizza cutter to cut the wedges (it’s much easier than a knife).  I used the cling film the pastry was wrapped in to help roll it out and I found that if the pastry got too warm it was more difficult to roll so leave the other discs in the fridge until ready to use.  Happy Hanukkah!   

By The Glass Note: These delicious pastries can be enjoyed from morning to night, so the best wine to have with them is of course a sparkling wine; a genre that is as familiar to early mornings topped with orange juice as it is with midnight toasts. Kosher wine has come a long way, and with some research you can know find sophisticated Kosher sparkling wines include Arbanel Cremant D’Alsace from France and of course there are selections from Israel. The Golan Heights is an emerging viticultural region and producers such as Yarden make very credible sparkling wines utilizing traditional methods. If a Kosher wine isn’t available or necessary, keep the sparkling wine choice on the fresher side to match these little pastries. Avoid the heaviest of Champagnes and opt instead for the balanced attack of Spanish Cava or Northern Italian Prosecco.