Recipe: Apricot Walnut Rugelach

from the blog 17 and baking

Apricot Walnut Rugelach
Makes 4 dozen cookies

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2-pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar plus 9 tablespoons
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Zest of a tangerine
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves, pureed in a food processor
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk, for egg wash

In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Beat in 1/4 cup sugar, the salt, the vanilla extract and tangerine zest. Add the flour and mix on low speed until just incorporated. Transfer the dough to a well-floured board and roll it into a ball. Cut the mound into four pieces, wrap each quarter in plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for one hour.

Make the filling by combining 6 tablespoons of the granulated sugar, the brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, the dried cranberries, and the walnuts.

On a well-floured board, roll each quarter of chilled dough into a 9″ circle. Spread the dough with 2 tablespoons apricot preserves and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the filling mixture. Lightly press the filling into the dough, then cut the circle into 12 equal wedges. I used a pizza roller to cut the whole circle into quarters, then each quarter into thirds. Roll each wedge up into a crescent shape, starting with the wider end. Set the cookies, with the points tucked under, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Make the topping by mixing 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon.

Lightly brush each cookie with egg wash and sprinkle with the topping. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack and cool completely.

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