Easy Rugelach

Though rugelach is enjoyed year-round, this fruit-and-nut pastry is especially popular during Hanukkah. Cream cheese in the cookie dough -- which is chilled for hours before it is rolled out and filled with apricot preserves, currants, walnuts, and raisins -- helps produce an extra-flaky crust.

  • Yield: Makes about 4 dozen

Photography: Joseph De Leo

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2006

Ingredients

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup apricot preserves
  • 1 cup (5 ounces) finely chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1 cup currants
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins, coarsely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream

Directions

  1. Whisk together flour and salt in a medium bowl. With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter and cream cheese until combined. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture; beat to combine. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Roll into a ball; wrap in plastic. Chill until firm, about 6 hours or up to overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Whisk together sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Divide dough into quarters. Working with one piece at a time, roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to an 8-by-12-inch rectangle. With long side facing you, spread with 3 tablespoons preserves, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup each walnuts and currants, 2 tablespoons raisins, and about 2 tablespoons sugar mixture. Starting with a long side, tightly roll dough into a log; place, seam side down, on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.
  3. Brush each log with cream, dividing evenly; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon sugar mixture. Bake until golden brown, about 45 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool 15 minutes. Slice into 1-inch-thick slices. Rugelach can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container up to 2 days.