Note: Welcome to our third annual Cookie Month! Every weekday in December we're going to be sharing a cookie recipe with all of you, just in time for the holidays. So let's get those ovens preheated and get baking!
It's pretty easy to have ambivalent feeling about rugelach because, honestly, there are some mediocre specimens out there (I'm looking at you, plastic bagged cookies by the cashier at the Jewish deli.) But when made at home, these little crescent cookies can be pretty amazing—tender cream cheese pastry wrapped around swirls of dried fruit, chocolate, and nuts.
These particular Rugelach come by way of chef Jason Weiner of Almond, a French-accented restaurant in Manhattan. The recipe came to Weiner from who else but a Jewish grandmother, and he was so enamored with her rugelach that he now brings her in once a week to make them.
This recipe offers up a fine and very workable dough that bakes up like a dream as well as a selection of three fillings—chocolate, apricot, and raisin—to finish your cookies. The chocolate is blended with bitter walnuts, apricots get a hit of brandy, and raisins are mixed with rum, all of which add an elegance to this Jewish cookie classic.