Here it is…the allerg- free, awesome, delicious, contemporary-flavored hamentshen recipe. You asked for it and I delivered.  I decided to go a little funky on the flavors this year. It’s not that I don’t love a good ole apricot triangular pastry, it’s just that, I wanted something a little more contemporary, new, refreshing and I instantly thought of chocolate and lemon.  They go well together, and they taste great separately, so roll up your sleeves, here we go…

 

Lemon Hamentashen

½ block silken tofu (don’t be afraid, trust me, you’ll never know)

1-cup sugar (I use organic crystals)

2 tsp good quality vanilla (not the stuff with corn syrup in it)

2-4 drops lemon extract

 1 tsp. lemon zest

1/3 cup canola oil

1 tsp. baking powder

1 TBSP soymilk

¼ tsp. salt

2 ½ cups flour (with a little extra for kneading)

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

  1. Drain tofu in a strainer for about 10 minutes, lightly pressing on it to get out the excess water.
  2. Cut tofu in half (use the other half for the chocolate hamentashen, later) and cut into smaller pieces and place in the food processor.
  3. Add the sugar, oil, vanilla, soymilk, zest, and lemon extract.
  4. Pulse until it is smooth and creamy.  Make sure there are no bits of tofu lying at the bottom or on the sides.
  5. Sift flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl
  6. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix.  As it becomes more difficult, use your hands to work the dough. It will eventually become  soft, pliable dough. If it is too sticky, add more flour.Once dough is smooth and elastic, wrap it in a ziploc bad and place in the freezer for about an hour.
  7. When you are ready to roll out the dough, work with what you need and keep the rest in the fridger. The dough softens rather quickly and is delicate so you have to keep it cold and work fast.

    Place the dough on a floured surface (I usually cut a gallon size Ziploc bag in half and place the dough between the two sheets with a little flour, I find that the dough doesn’t stick to the bags as much.

    Roll the dough to ¼-inch thickness and use a round cookie cutter to make rounds. I actually use a small juice glass that is 2 ½ inches round. You can make them bigger if you so desire.

    Fill the hamantashen with a ¼ to ½ tsp. of filling. You can use fruit preserves, jellies, chocolate ganache, plain old chocolate chips (use mini chips for mini hamantashen because they don’t tear the dough), or my favorite…Israeli chocolate spread.

    Bring the sides up over the filling and press into a triangular shape. Pinch the seams closed so the filling doesn’t ooze out.

Space the hamantashen out about an inch apart on your baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes. Remember, if you want them crunchy like a cookie; keep them in for the full 15 minutes. If you are a cakey hamantashen lover, then begin checking them at around 13 minutes to see how well cooked they are.

Remove and cool for about 1 minute on baking tray, then transfer to a cookie rack.

A Word about Tofu

Tofu is very easy and versatile. In fact, I use it in many baking recipes for various holidays. Below are a few tofu pointers.

It comes   in different consistencies. For this recipe, soft, silken tofu is best.   Drain the tofu for a few minutes to remove any excess water.

  • Tofu comes  in a vacuum-packed box in the refrigerator section of your grocery store (usually in the produce section).
  • Cut along the dotted lines at the top and the tofu will easily slide out, just gently guide it into the strainer.
  • After  draining, cut the block in half.
  • Before  placing it in the food processor, cut the ½-block piece into smaller pieces to distribute it more thoroughly in the food processor.

Fillings:

You can use raspberry, apricot, as they go well with lemon.  I used all of these (Polaner All Natural Fruit Spread) and a chocolate ganache.  The only problem with the ganache is that it takes a while to cool down and thicken, so if you are in a rush, you can just use mini chips, frosting, or I like Israeli chocolate spread (which is made in a nut free facility)!

 

Ganache recipe-From Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World

4 oz. chocolate ( I use Enjoy Life mini chips

2 TBSP maple syrup (the real stuff)

¼ cup soymilk

Place the soymilk in a pot and bring to a boil. Immediately take off the flame and dump the chips and syrup into the pot and mix until smooth.

That’s it! Of course, you need to wait for it to be room temperature, where it will thicken a bit. 

 

Chocolate Brownie Hamentashen (OMG)!

½ block tofu

1 cup sugar

2tsp. good quality vanilla

1/3 cup canola oil

½ tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking poweder

½ cup cocoa powder

¼ tsp. salt

1 ¾ cups unbleached flour (you may need up to ¼ cup extra if the dough is sticky)

Directions

They are pretty much the same as the lemon hamentashen. Though, they take a few minutes longer to bake.

  1. Preheat   oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a food processor, blend the tofu, oil and sugar until ingredients are smooth and creamy. Make sure to scrape down the sides in order to get all the little bits of tofu blended.
  3. Add the vanilla and blend again.
  4. In a  separate bowl, sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Combine   the liquid ingredients with the dry and mix. You will have to switch to using your hands until it becomes dough. The dough will be sticky. If it is too sticky, just sprinkle with some more flour while you work it into smooth dough.
  6. Place the dough into a Ziploc bag, or wrap in saran wrap and chill in the freezer for an hour.
  7. When you  are ready to roll out the dough, work with what you need and keep the rest in the freezer. The dough softens rather quickly and is delicate so you have to keep it cold and work fast.
  8. Place the dough on a floured surface (I usually cut a gallon size Ziploc bag in half and place the dough between the two sheets with a little flour, I find  that the dough doesn’t stick to the bags as much.
  9. Roll the  dough to ¼-inch thickness and use a round cookie cutter to make rounds. I actually use a small juice glass that is 2 ½ inches round. You can make them bigger if you so desire.
  10. Fill the   hamantashen with a ¼ to ½ tsp. of filling. You can use fruit preserves, jellies, chocolate ganache, plain old chocolate chips (use mini chips for mini hamantashen because they don’t tear the dough), or my      favorite…Israeli chocolate spread.
  11. Bring the  sides up over the filling and press into a triangular shape. Pinch the seams closed so the filling doesn’t ooze out.
  12. Space the hamantashen out about an inch apart on your baking sheet and bake for 15-17 minutes. Remember, if you want them crunchy like a cookie; keep them in longer than 15 minutes. If you are a cakey hamantashen lover, then begin checking them at around 13 minutes to see how well cooked they are.
  13. Remove and  cool for about 1 minute on baking tray, then transfer to a cookie rack.