I wasn't too sure about the chocolate in these, however. I DO LOVE chocolate, but not really mixed in with dried fruit and nuts (which is part of the problem I had with all those cookies we baked a month or two ago). But I really do like fruit and nuts. I figured it would be easy enough to bake some with and some without the chocolate since it's just sprinkled on at the end.
- I used 4.7 oz to equal 1 cup flour
- filling variations
I made half a batch following Dorie's recipe pretty closely. For half of these, I used chocolate and the other half I used a second kind of dried fruit.
1. grapefruit marmalade with cinnamon sugar and also with
--- dried sour cherries
--- and mini semisweet chips or currants
For the other half batch, I used wonderful fig preserves that were left from my daughter J.D.E.:
2. orange fig spread with walnuts with a tiny sprinkling of brown sugar and also
--- with and without currants
- I usually roll out dough on top of a silicone mat. I did that with the first disc, then realized that I was going to be cutting with a sharp knife. Uh oh, I have a slit in my other mat from a previous bout with a knife, and didn't want to slice this mat. I cut really carefully, and the mat was fine. With the second disc, I just rolled on the counter.
Grapefruit marmalade + pecans + dried cherries. With chocolate mini chips on the left and currants on the right.- My rolled dough wasn't very circular, but it didn't affect the cookies since the wedges were so narrow. Some them were a little fatter rolled up than the others.
- After choosing the prettiest 6 to bake (1 of each variation and 2 extra), I labeled and wrapped the rest of the cookies, and put them in the freezer.
- I was so excited to have rolled my rugelach successfully that I pulled the cookie sheets out of the fridge and popped them right into the oven. Then I sat down to read the P&Q and saw Amanda's comment about decorating sugar. Oops! I had totally forgotten the egg wash and the sugar (although I had it all ready on the counter...) So I had to dig the carefully packed rugelach out of the freezer, pull out 4 more, prepare and bake them properly. All the while keeping track of the different flavors.
- Since I only baked off a few, I didn't want to waste a whole egg for the glaze. I poured a small quantity of Eggbeaters in a ramekin and mixed with a few drops of water. Some rugelach recipes call for a milk wash.
With and without the egg wash + sugar. It made a huge difference in the appearance and the taste of the cookies.- I sprinkled the tops with demarara cane sugar.
My, my, these cookies are beautiful, in a "did I really make that?" way. And SO GOOD! I baked them in the evening, but waited until the morning to photograph. I finally got to taste them for breakfast. I saved the rest for my husband (who also thought they were great). Boy am I glad I only baked a few! I plan to bake the remaining cookies for book club on Thursday evening.
The crust was light and flaky, and the egg wash + sugar added a crunchy finishing touch. I love that they're not too sweet; in fact our favorite is the grapefruit/pecan/cherry/currant. The ones with the tiny bit of chocolate were also good - the semisweet chocolate mellowed the bitterness of the grapefruit. And, actually, the fig ones were tasty. The fig spread was plenty sweet, and I'm glad I didn't add much sugar to them. The ones with the nuts only should have had more nuts - the filling was a little sparse.
A big thanks to Piggy of Piggy’s Cooking Journal for such a fabulous choice this week. The rugelach recipe can be found on pages 150-151 of Dorie Greenspan's book Baking From My Home to Yours, or in Piggy's blog post. Visit the Tuesdays With Dorie blogroll to see how more than 300 TWD bakers baked this recipe!
My schedule for the next 2 weeks is bordering on the crazy, so I'm not sure I'll be able to bake the kugelhopf. If not, I plan to bake it closer to Thanksgiving, and will post it then.
Just in case you don't obsessively check all of my past TWD posts looking for updates, here's the current status of some of my former TWD efforts:
The muffins wore their best game face to the Pumpkin Muffin Taste Challenge at our book group, but were roundly beaten by the darker, denser, oil-based muffins. Of the two variations on Dorie's muffins, the ones with currants were preferred to the plain ones. I forgot to take photos of the big show-down.
I made these as minis and froze some of them unbaked for later. My husband loved them, and enjoyed the final one on Sunday. (I had a chocolate cupcake!) I'm sad to see the end of the galettes, but I now know that they do freeze extremely well. Whenever we were ready for a special dessert, I popped one into the oven - still frozen - and added a few minutes to the bake time.
Dimply Plum Cake
This is still my favorite TWD recipe. I've made this cake 8 or 9 times, but never the full recipe. Most often I bake a 2/3 recipe, which serves us for a few breakfasts and a weeknight dessert or two. My favorite combination is pluot/lime zest/cardamom. I've adapted the recipe to make it healthier (but just as delicious), and my final recommendations can be found at the end of this update post. The weirdest thing is that the fruit only got "jammy" - as Dorie describes it - once, and boy, was that delicious.
Chocolate Chocolate cupcakes.
After baking and photographing these, I sampled one and put the rest immediately into the freezer. Last Thursday I pulled them out and brought them to book club, where they made a big hit. They went from very good to amazing! The fine, dense crumb got softer and very deeply chocolate in flavor, and the ganache was firm and fudgey. I have to say the mocha filling was a really good complement.
I finished the last of the cherry biscotti yesterday. I love that these cookies aren't fazed by staleness.