A Hamentashen is the traditional 3-sided pastry eaten on the Jewish holiday Purim. They are made by folding in the sides of a circular piece of dough with a filling in the center.
Purim is one of the funnest holidays on the Jewish calendar! It commemorates when the Jewish people living in Persia were saved from extermination. Hamentashen are shaped in a triangle recalling Haman’s three-cornered hat.
It is customary to hold carnival-like celebrations on Purim. I remember when I was a kid our temple would hold a carnival for all the children on Purim. When I was 5 I dressed up as a Hamentashen for Purim. [It is clear from my cardboard costume with red scribbles that my parents didn't work for instructables.]
Step 1: Recipe
I use the same dough recipe that I use for my Minnesota Cookies.
1 cup of butter (2 sticks)
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups of sugar
3 cups of flour
jelly or jam (flavor of choice)
Preheat oven to 350.
Mix butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla together. Once smooth add in flour 1/2 a cup at a time.
When all the ingredients are mixed let the dough sit out for 15 minutes. In my experience this makes the dough firmer and the cookies chewier.
Step 2: Folding Cookie
1. Take about a table spoon worth of dough and roll it into a ball using your hands. You will want to cover your hands with flour so the dough doesn't stick.
2. Use the palms of your hands to flatten the dough into a circle. Make sure the circle is the same thickness all around (about 1/8 inch). You want the flatten circles to be about 2 1/2" diameter. You can use a rolling pin and cookie cutter for this but I find it easier to just do it by hand.
3. Place on cookie sheet. Put a teaspoon of jelly (or whatever filler you like best) in the center of the circle.
4. Fold two sides of the triangle and pinch the corners together. Fold up the bottom side and pinch the two new corners together.
Step 3: Baking Cookies
Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. You will know they're done when the bottoms of the cookies are slightly browning.
Let cool for 15 minutes and enjoy!