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Cherry Rugelach

Pastry:
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/3 cup (1/3 of an 8-oz. package) cream cheese, softened
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar

Filling:
1 pkg. (16 oz.) (about 1-3/4 cups) frozen sweet cherries
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Egg wash (1 egg whisked with 2 Tbsp. cold milk or water
Additional granulated sugar

For pastry, beat butter and cream cheese with electric mixer until smooth. Add flour and sugar; beat on low speed until crumbly. Turn mixture onto floured board; knead until dough forms. Cover and set aside while preparing filling. For filling, coarsely chop frozen cherries. Combine sugar and cornstarch; mix well. Combine chopped cherries and sugar mixture in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered 5 minutes, or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in walnuts. Let cool in refrigerator 30 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll one-third of dough into a 10-inch circle. Spread dough with about 1/2 cup cherry filling, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Cut circle into 8 wedge-shape pieces. Roll up dough, beginning at wide end of each wedge. Place cookies, tip side down, about 2 inches apart on lightly greased cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Brush each cookie lightly with egg wash and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake in a preheated 350-degree oven 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool. Makes 24 cookies.

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