Thursday, September 30, 2010

My version of a holiday season...

I've been on a real jewish food kick lately- last weekend I made cholent with vegetarian kishka (the cholent was my mom's recipe, the kishka recipe I found by searching through a great forum to search for jewish food recipes). Today I'm having matza ball soup for dinner.

And just now I was really craving my grandmother's old rugaluch. They sometimes have rugaluch at the grocery store, but the pastry part is all wrong, it's like this croissant type thing. The type my grandmother made was like this cookie..almost like a hamentash dough type recipe, but less crumbly. She would make Cinnamon ones and chocolate ones and ones with jam and they were liked rolled up cookies almost. She would make dozens and dozens of them in all different flavors when we would go down on our once yearly trip to visit my grandparents for a week in florida, where they moved to when I was 3 or 4.

The recipe died with my grandmother in 2007; my parents later went through all the documents in that house when my grandfather moved back up to the northeast to live near my parents after my grandmother died. They didn't find it.

My dad is going to send my some of my grandfather's paintings when they pack up his small apartment in NJ near where my parents live. In addition to being a NYC cab driver, a radiator repair man, an author (of a memoir about the holocaust), a survivor of 10 different concentration camps, and an avid fisherman, he was a painter. It'll be nice to have some of his stuff to remember him by.

The condo in Florida is now my parent's vacation home, soon to be retirement home. Apparently they've redone the whole place because it was depressing my dad to be there when it reminded him of his mom all the time. Things change. The childhood I remember isn't there to go back and visit anymore, even if I wanted to.

Does anyone have a rugaluch recipe that might be like the one I'm describing? I'd love to try out a few and try to reproduce it.


  1. No. I'm still trying to find a recipe for fried pies to make my husband's heart happy because his grandmother made them.
    Good luck.

  2. This is a great basic recipe, I've nevered bothered with the topping part:



  3. I think the basic dough for rogelach is a yeast dough, like Challes dough, more or less, you spred it, put butter, oil, cacao on it and roll it...

  4. sorry, not butter, but sugar. What was I thinking...

  5. I really like chocolate rugalach ummmm

  6. I know you're not supposed to say this, but I LOVE the rugelach I make. It comes from my synagogue cookbook, which credits Food for Thought, but a search doesn't show me what that is.

    8 ozs cream cheese
    8 ozs butter
    2 cups flour
    3 tbs sour cream
    1 egg yolk
    1 tsp baking powder
    1 egg white, lightly beaten with a little water

    cinnamon-sugar mixture
    1 cup pecans finely chopped
    (although I usually skip the nuts--I do chocolate chips for the kids and jelly [mmm, apricot!] for me)

    Thoroughly mix together the cream cheese, butter, flour, sour cream, egg yolk, and baking powder. Form into a ball, wrap in waxed paper and refrigerate overnight.

    Divide dough into 8 parts, dipping each piece into flour. Roll into 8" circle, 1/8" thick. Cut into 8 equal wedges. Sprinkle cinnamon-sugar mixture and some nuts on each section. Roll up each section, starting at the wide end and dip in beaten egg white. Dip into cinnamon-sugar mixture once again and place on greased cookie sheet [way easier to use parchment paper!].

    Bake at 375 for 20 minutes until gold brown.


  7. Spice and Spirit cookbook has a hamantaschy rugalach dough:

    1 package dry yeast
    1/4 cup lukewarm water
    1 cup margarine (i use butter)
    2 eggs
    3 cups flour
    3 T sugar

    1. in a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water and let bubble.

    2. in a saucepan, melt margarine

    3. in a separate bowl, beat eggs. stir in flour and sugar. add melted margarine and yeast and mix until it's dough. cover bowl and refrigerate.

    4.When you remove it from the fridge, divide it into 4 equal parts (then make 4 circles. spread filling on them, cut into 12-18 triangles and roll them up)

    Bake at 350 for 15 min.

    Also, the recipe instructs to let the dough sit overnight for it to rise. I've waiting an hour and it was fine.

    This book's recipes make a lot of food (I think it's from chabad, fwiw), so I tend to cut them and approximate with few problems.

    Only a couple weeks ago I checked out that vegetarian kishke recipe from imamother, I'll have to give it a try.


  8. Suggestion - get Claudia Roden's The Book of Jewish Food. It's the best Jewish cookbook in the world. Period.

  9. No recipes to contribute but I just wanted to let you know that over the past week I have read youre ENTIRE blog and loved it. It started when I was home for a "sick day" last week and then I had to finish. It was a bit like a memoir and I would suggest you write a book but I know you probably don't have time!

    I was not Orthodox - was raised mostly secularly but then ended up observant in a Conservative way, so never really "On the D" but can relate to a lot since I am now an atheist also and can no longer find any meaning in rituals or observance.

    Anyway, thanks for sharing your amazing journey.


  10. If you're comfortable sharing the name of your grandfather's book, I would like to read it. I totally understand if you aren't, of course.


Anonymous comments are enabled for now