Saturday, February 27, 2010

Purim is Here and Naturally the Hamantashen Wars

I love Purim, which is definitely the most kid friendly holiday ever. It's a powerful story filled with lots of intrigue, starring a power hungry king, Achashverosh, an evil Prime Minister, Haman, and a beautiful Queen, Esther.

Today it's celebrated with dress up parties and lots of delicious food and drink. Above - Joanna, as Queen Esther, (still always dressing up as anything "Princess") and her younger sister, Sharron, the Court Jester (she always was the ham). Joanna's children will be dressing up quite differently for the Purim party tomorrow. Boaz, I'm told is going as a giraffe and Dov as Spiderman.

But back to food....truthfully, although you can find many great dishes for your Purim parties, for me, it's all about the Hamantashen...filled cookies shaped like Haman's three cornered hat. And everyone has their own favorite. Much like bagel wars, there is always a heated discussion when it comes to filling and dough.
Even in our own family we have very definite opinions. I love mine with a tart and tangy prune and apricot filling like my mother used to make. Joanna, loves the sweeter date filled and the poppy seed fillings equally. My Honey, on the other hand is impartial...he loves them all equally, including the chocolate filled (which to me is a travesty).

So the other day, in preparation, Joanna and I got together at her place and made two versions (my station was at the front - I used my take on Marcy Goldman's version, with memories of my mother's. Joanna followed Faye Levy's recipe. And if you look at the photo of the cookies, mine are shinier from the egg wash and oil based dough, Joanna's are whiter and three year old Boaz went free form with sprinkles. He did help me make circle shapes for my hamantashen as well. It's always fun to bake with kids. Soon enough his brother will be helping out too.

And for the big question....Do you like your cookie fillings tangy or sweet?

Happy Purim everyone! And for my non-Jewish friends, the cookies are still delicious and the story a great read, especially if you love the intrigue of Royal Courts through the Ages.

7 comments:

Robin said...

Personally the date and halva ones are my favorites (not poppy, never poppy) but my kids are typical Israeli children - for them it's chocolate or nothing, preferably the simplest pareve chocolate spread, not even the good stuff.

Happy Purim to you and yours.

PS Mine were Harry Potter and a fairy, not an Esther or a Mordechai in sight.

Ruth Daniels said...

LOL, and good to know. Thanks for sharing. Have a Happy Purim.

Psychgrad said...

I had a hamentaschen-making marathon last weekend. We made some with apricots and some with poppyseed (which was surprisingly annoying to work with). Both turned out really good though.

Happy Purim.

Goody said...

I did a cookie style this year, rather than yeast-risen and they were really delicious. I'm always a bit torn between making what I remember from childhood, and what I actually prefer as an adult.

I love the festive sprinkles.You have excellent kitchen help ;)

Ruth Daniels said...

Psychgrad, better you than me with poppy seeds...love them on challah and bagels and definitely in mun cookies, but never in Hamantashen. Glad they were a hit at your place, though.

Goody, I know what you mean - some memories still taste great and others...well...not so much.

And yes, I do have excellent kitchen help - and he gets paid in all the sprinkles he can eat.

Ruth Daniels said...

Psychgrad, better you than me with poppy seeds...love them on challah and bagels and definitely in mun cookies, but never in Hamantashen. Glad they were a hit at your place, though.

Goody, I know what you mean - some memories still taste great and others...well...not so much.

And yes, I do have excellent kitchen help - and he gets paid in all the sprinkles he can eat.

colleen @ foodietots said...

I love the family hamantaschen bake-off, and especially the sprinkles version! Thanks so much for posting these recipes. I used Marcy's version (but with butter) and they came out perfectly.

Hope you had a lovely Purim!