This recipe is not just about coming up with a hamentaschen that is actually, you know, good. It’s about my nostalgia for the lemon hand pies I used to buy at the supermarket as a kid. They were junky, sugary calzones, shelf-stable, filled with a too-sweet lemon custard, and I loved them. Either they disappeared or I’m shopping in the wrong aisles, but just as well: the loss spurred me to create these far better hamentaschen in their image.
Meyer Lemon Curd Hamentaschen
Makes about 36 cookies.
Meyer Lemon Curd First, make the lemon curd following Amanda Hesser’s recipe. (I’m not reposting it here because I’m not a thief.) The recipe makes about twice as much as you’ll need, so either halve it or be prepared to enjoy a lot of lemon curd.
Hamentaschen Dough This is the recipe from zabars.com that makes rich, buttery hamentaschen, the kind that caused writer Bob Lefsetz to convert to Purim cookie-lover. Reposted with permission. I do all this in a food processor, but the recipe is for hands-on baking.
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
extra flour for rolling out dough
½ cup sugar
¾ lb sweet butter
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
In a large bowl mix flour, sugar and baking powder.
Use cold butter – and chop it into as small pieces as possible.
Add butter to flour mixture – add lemon rind, vanilla, and eggs and mix, using your hands, until dough forms a ball. You may have to add flour if dough is very sticky. Cover ball with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours (overnight is fine).
Cut the ball of dough in quarters and roll out, on floured surface, until 1/4” thick. Cut the dough into even circles. I use a water glass to cut dough – but any 3”- 4” round cookie cutter will do.
Fill the center of the circle with a scant one teaspoon of lemon curd filling and make three corners by pinching them together.
Place on a cookie sheet kined with parchment and refrigerate 30 minutes to overnight. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove from cookie sheet and cool. Dust with powdered sugar.