- 2 cups ( 240 g) All purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks cold) Butter unsalted
- 8 oz (cold) Cream Cheese
- 1 Egg yolk
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 container of about 8oz or 1 cup Dried apricot
- 1/4 cup Almonds blanched
- 2 TBSP Sugar white
- 1 jar Apricot Preserves
- Sprinkle on top when cooled Powdered sugar
Well, I could not wait to make the apricots with almonds rugelach. I realize it is the same cookie two weeks in a row. But the ingredients were on my counter, which kept calling to me. I could hear them say, “make me, make me,” so of course, I had no choice lol. Fall weather screams apricots and apples, at least as far as I am concerned. Went to the dried fruit section at the store, there were only 2 containers of dried apricots left. Trying to be pragmatic, of course, I took both. I found a web site that gives 8 benefits to eating dried apricots. From what I am reading, I should eat more of these since one benefit is to boost vision, and at my age, I can use all the help I can get.
It is sometimes hard to make the right choice in pairing fruit to nut combinations with so many nuts. I wanted a nut that was not going to overpower the apricot taste. I love to use almonds that are a mild tasting nut when blanched, and I thought it would be perfect with apricots. The benefits of almonds are fantastic, which you can read here on the benefits of almonds.
The rugelach is a cookie I have wanted to try for a long time. They looked so good, and I think I was a little intimated in making them in fear of not doing them correctly. But there is one thing I have learned on my cookie journey; not all my cookies will be perfect looking. But I want home bakers to know that that is OK and that this makes your cookies unique to you. As long as your family enjoys what you bake, that is all that matters.
Things I use:
Weigh or measure the flour, salt and add to a food processor. Pulse 1 or 2 times. Next, cut up the butter and cream cheese and add to the flour. Pulse till it looks like small little balls. Take the egg yolk and the vanilla and mix it with a fork before adding it to the flour, butter, cream cheese mixture. Pulse till it looks like large balls starting to come together. Dump onto a pastry mat or just a clean counter and mold it to a flattened rectangle shape.
Cut the flatten ball into four parts. I find it easier to mold the quarters into a disk shape after I flatten it to about a 1" thick and wrap it with plastic wrap. You want them to be as round as you can make it, so it is easier to roll out. The disks need to refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days. I put 2 in the refrigerator, and I froze the other two disk to make later. The frozen cookie dough disks will last for three months, but I will be using mine sooner than that. (Here is an update I added how to make the dough, but I used for this week's cookies the two disks that I had frozen from last weeks Cranberry Orange and Walnut Rugelach.)
Depending on how many disks you are making at a time, I pulled 2 out of the refrigerator that had thawed overnight so they could warm up just a little. I added the dried apricot, almonds, sugar, and pulsed in a food processor until they are in small pieces. They should look like a crumble. Flour a hard surface and your favorite rolling pin. Since I am using a pizza cutter and do not want to damage my countertop, I use a pastry mat. The trade-off means it could slightly cut into your pastry mat, but I figure it is cheaper to replace the pastry mat than my countertop. Roll out the disk to about a 12 inch round. Take 1/2 jar of apricot preserves and heat in a microwave for 30 seconds then stir till smooth. I take a pasty bush and paint the cookie dough with the preserves, leaving the outer rim without any preserves.
Next, I add the apricot and almond crumble on top of the preserves and smooth out any crumble clumping. Don't overfill, or it will be hard to roll and pick up to move to a parchment-lined cookie sheet pan. Taking a sharp knife or using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 10 or 12 triangles. Start from the outside edge, roll the dough towards the center to form a crescent style shape. After filling the cookie pan, stick the whole pan with the rolled cookies into the refrigerator for 20 minutes to firm up the cookie dough. Then place into the oven at 350° for 20 - 25 minutes. Gently move to a cooling rack after taking the pan from the oven. After the cookies completely cooled, sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy.