The bakers, my mother-in-law Florence and her sous chef Simon, with sticky hands and rolling pin.
I love to look at well-used cookbooks, it is where you find a cook's secrets. This is my mother-in-law Florence Hertzman's tried and true Naomi Cookbook, and the reading is riveting … Page 35 for Sweet and Sour Meatballs has a few ketchup stains and recipe adjustments, Brisket on page 32 has the initials 'LS' which I think is code for Linda Sue (her daughter), must be her favourite brisket. Page 107, Apple Sauce Cake with Topping is 'very good' and Almond Macaroons on page 141 has a note, 'watch out, we added 1 cup of flour!'…dated from 1976.
The Jewish holiday of Purim is just a few days away and part of the tradition is a triangular filled cookie called a hamantaschen (literally, Haman's hat) which brings me to page 180, Purim Recipes. It is on this page that more notes are added and floury finger prints live on.
It is fun to watch Flo with her apron around her neck, sticky dough and rolling pin, bring this recipe to life.
This post was originally posted in 2015.
Grandma Flo's Hamantaschen Recipe
Inspired from the Naomi Cookbook by Hadassah WIZO Organization of Canada HADASSAH: Naomi Chapter of Toronto.
Makes about 24 hamantaschen, depending on size. Traditionally filled with prunes or mohn, (poppy seeds) but go ahead and add whatever filling you like, dates, apricots, apples and cherries are all delicious.
For the Dough:
3 cups flour
3 eggs, (medium)
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup butter or margarine
1/4 tsp salt
3 tsp baking powder
1. Stir together baking powder, flour, sugar and salt; cut in shortening.
2. Add well beaten eggs and mix well to a soft dough.
3. Allow dough to sit for 10 minutes before rolling.
4. Roll out on floured board to a quarter inch thickness.
5. Cut with large, round cookie cutter.
6. Put a spoonful of desired filling in centre and pinch together to form triangular pocket.
7. Brush with egg, put on well greased pan and bake 12 to 15 minutes in 400 degree oven.
Ingredients for the Poppy Seed Filling
1/2 lb of poppy seeds
1/2 cup honey
lemon zest of half a lemon or 1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup sugar
Directions for the Poppy Seed Filling
1. Scald poppy seeds with boiling water two or three times.
2. Put in food processor and blend for a few seconds.
3. Add sugar, honey and lemon zest or vanilla and blend well.
Ingredients for the Prune Filling:
1 lb large prunes, pitted
1 tbsp lemon juice
zest from one lemon
1/2 cup sugar
Directions for the Prune Filling
1. Stew prunes until soft.
2. Put in food processor with sugar and lemon and lemon zest.
3. Blend until just combined.
4. If too mussy add 2 tbsp of chopped nuts.