Traditional Hamantaschen Dough
This dough, made with shortening and butter, yields a light, cookie-like texture and is similar to the hamantaschen (but with your home made taste) you could expect to find in a commercial bakery. It is just about my favorite hamantaschen dough. If you require a dairy free or pareve dough, simply use all shortening or non-dairy margarine (instead of butter and shortening). Over the years, it has become one of my favourites. You can also use this dough to make cookie triangles – “mock” hamantaschens, for children who prefer unfilled cookies. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with plain sugar or colored sprinkles. These flat, triangular cookies are perfect for the younger set.
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup unsalted butter or unsalted margarine
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup orange juice or milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
4 cups, approximately, all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Egg Wash Fillings (as preferred)
Optional: regular or coarse sugar
Cream the shortening with the butter/or margarine and sugar. Add eggs and blend until smooth. (If mixture is hard to blend or seems curdled, add a bit of the flour to bind it) Stir in orange juice or milk and vanilla. Fold in flour, salt, and baking powder and mix to make a firm but soft dough. Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface and pat into a smooth mass. Cover and let rest ten minutes. Divide dough into two or three flattened discs. Work with one portion at a time. (Wrapped in plastic, dough can also be refrigerated for 2-3 days) Roll out dough on lightly floured board to a thickness of 1/8 inch. Use a 3- nch cookie cutter and cut into rounds. Brush rounds with egg wash. Fill with a generous teaspoonful of deired filling. Draw three sides together into center. (Grasp perimeters of circle with 1st, 2nd and 3rd, fingers and pull inward, towards center. (You should now have a three-cornered or triangular pastry. Essentially, fold two sides towards the center to form a triangle top. Then fold up the remaining dough towards the center to meet the other edges of the touch). Brush pastries with egg wash. If desired, sprinkle with regular or coarse sugar.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Bake until golden brown, about 18-25 minutes.
If you prefer, this dough can be made ahead and refrigerated (up to 2 days) or frozen (in either a disc of dough or already formed as filled pastries for a couple of months). If refrigerating, allow dough to warm up before rolling out. For frozen pastries, bake without defrosting.
Recipe doubles well.
About 4-6 dozen pastries.