Have you been baking cookies this holiday season? Although these rugelach, originally from the Jewish community of Poland, were never part of my Christmas cookie traditions growing up, they’ve been a favorite of mine for decades. I finally got around to making them this year, and they are melt-in-your-mouth delicious. I’m going to have to tuck these away in the freezer or I’ll eat the whole batch before company arrrives for the Christmas holiday. I followed the basic dough recipe from Ina Garten, but instead of using the traditional raisins, jam and nuts filling, I opted for a chocolate filling. I also lowered the temperature to 325 degrees, and kept them in a little longer, since at 350 degrees, some of the interior dough wasn’t thoroughly cooked.
After chilling the dough, quarter it and then roll each quarter to a circumference of about 9 or 10 inches. Spread the chocolate filling all around, cut into triangles, then roll up each triangle, starting from the wide end.
Place the rolled cookies on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, then brush with some beaten egg, and sprinkle with a little bit of sugar and a pinch of cinnamon.
Bake for about 20 minutes at 325 degrees F., or until lightly golden. Let them cool, then sprinkle with a little powdered sugar (optional) and enjoy.
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- FOR THE DOUGH:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- ½-pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ¼ cup granulated sugar plus 9 tablespoons
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- CHOCOLATE FILLING
- 8 oz semisweet chocolate
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ¼ ground cinnamon optional
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- FOR THE TOPPING:
- an egg, lightly beaten with a teaspoon of water, to brush on top
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- a pinch of cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Cream the cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light.
- Add ¼ cup granulated sugar, the salt, and vanilla.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the flour and mix until just combined.
- Dump the dough out onto a well-floured board and roll it into a ball.
- Cut the ball in quarters, wrap each piece in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- While the dough is chilling, melt the chocolate in a double boiler, then stir in the sugar, cinnamon and salt and mix well.
- On a well-floured board, roll each ball of dough into a 9 to 10-inch circle.
- Spread the dough with ¼ of the chocolate mixture.
- Cut the circle into 16 equal wedges, cutting the whole circle in quarters, then each quarter into four pieces.
- Starting with the wide edge, roll up each wedge.
- Place the cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Brush each cookie with the egg wash.
- Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle on the cookies.
- Bake for about 20 minutes, until lightly browned.
- Remove to a wire rack and let cool.