TWD Baking with Julia: Rugelach

.  Say it with me: rug - eh - lock.  Yep, you got it ☺  Well, that's according to Google.  I've actually been pronouncing it roo - ga - losh.  Oops.  But either way, it's a scrumptious treat all the same.

As you can see, it's that time again.  Another TWD post featuring a recipe from Baking with Julia.  For March, this fancy cookie we call rugelach was chosen for the first monthly post [the second one will be on March 20, we'll see if I get around to making it!].  And my oh my, were these a trip.

First of all, I didn't have a dang clue what rugelach was.  Heck, I can't even pronounce it!  I'd seen recipes for it in several of my recipe books but I've never actually seen it in person.  So when I saw that rugelach was our next assignment, I was all in.  But first, a little Googling was in order.

Rugelach is a Jewish rolled cookie surrounding a filling and literally means 'little twists.'  According to Wikipedia, some say rugelach share a common ancestor with the French croissant [uh, yum?!] and I would have to say that would be a fantastic comparison for this particular recipe.  Since I have never had rugelach before, I don't have much to compare it to.  But what I will say is that these are utterly fantastic and I've been missing out my entire life.  Thanks, mom...

These cookies start with a cream cheese pastry.  Okay, you had me at cream cheese.  And like I said, the cookie element in this recipe is strongly reminiscent of a croissant or a flakey, flakey pie crust.  And to accompany this wonderful pastry is several layers of filling.  Several.  As in four.  As in an apricot jam, cinnamon-sugar, cinnamon-sugar ground nuts, and plumped dried fruit layers of filling.  Can we say decadence?  Yes we can.  And I thoroughly enjoyed every single whopping bite.

The only thing I must put out there is that this treat is quite time consuming.  But, I would take my advice and break the steps up into a couple of days, such as making the pastry one day and completing the rugelach the following day.  The part that sucks up the time is chilling the pastry two times for several hours, otherwise nothing else is overly complicated.  And despite some pouting on my end from the feeling that I had made these wrong, I will say that if you have the time, these are more than worth it.  I've truthfully never made anything like these, so it was an interesting [and deeeeelish] adventure!

If you're feeling a little kitchen courageous, head on over to The Urban Hiker or My Baking Heart for the rugelach recipe.  Happy baking!  .

My Notes:
  • As you'll see in the recipe, you have the choice to pick what types of nuts and dried fruits you would like to use.  I chose to use almonds, pecans and walnuts, and cherries, apricots, and dates for my filling.
  • All of the fillings combined makes a LARGE amount of goodness.  So while you're rolling your pasty, you'll have to really tuck in the fillings [it will fall out some] and be patient.  I got a little flustered at this part because it can be a bit messy, but if you do everything on wax/parchment paper, it'll make for much easier clean up.
  • As you can see from some of my pictures, I didn't generally get that signature twist in my rugelach like I had hoped.  I'm not really sure what happened there...  Nevertheless, the taste was still spot on!

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  1. I'm glad you did the research. I didn't realize the name meant "little twist." Nice!

    Also, yours look delectable.

  2. I've never heard of it before Jess but it sure looks good. I'd love to try it sometime.

    Anne xx

  3. Your rugelach look delish! This was a new recipe to me but I did have fun making it. I do enjoy baking groups that send me way out of my comfort zone!

  4. Yeah, these were yummy! I'm so relieved I'm not the only one who had trouble keeping them spiraled :) I love your filling combo~

  5. nice flakey looking dough. just curious, did you use the mixer or food processor method?

    1. Oo I should have put that in my notes :) But I used my stand mixer, the food processor would be great though, too!

  6. Jess, your blog keeps looking more like you everyday! Did you design all the cute-ness? I need some major help in this department.

    Okay, when we are neighbors again, we will have to walk our dogs before we eats all your delish baked goods!

  7. Absolutely beautiful :-)
    I am a little suprised at how new rugelach are to so many people. They are very commonly found up here in the North East - I am sure we will soon come upon a delicacy that is new to me, which will be fun.

  8. YUM! This looks great. Love the new look too. :)

  9. your rugelach looks so yummy!

  10. Beautiful! wish I had a one (or two) right now! I agree these were a lot of work, maybe good to make at Christmas to give away. I just can't have cookies like this hanging around in my kitchen, way too addictive, if you know what I mean!

  11. These rugalach are mouth-watering
    They look sooooooooo delicious, I can almost smell the aroma via the screen

  12. Your rugelach look perfect! I really enjoyed making these. To me, they tasted a little like baklava which I love. I didn't put the dried fruit in, just quince paste and walnuts!

  13. This looks delicious! Thanks for linking up to our "Strut Your Stuff Saturday." We would love to have you back!! -The Sisters


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