Back in December, IJN columnist Tehilla Goldberg bemoaned the lack of traditional potato latkes. She was surrounded by all sorts of latkes — butternut squash, cauliflower, zucchini — but not a potato latke in sight. It seems the same ‘virus’ is infecting hamantaschen.
Remember when it was poppy or prune? Well, probably not. You’d have to travel quite far back for a time when hamantaschen came with a simply binary option. Raspberry, apricot and chocolate chip have become so ubiquitous as to have reached ‘traditional’ status. Boy, are hamantaschen entering a whole new era. Guava and cheese? Pretzel bagel hot dog?
These new creative variants are fun, no doubt, but are they hamantaschen? Just as butternut squash “latkes” are essentially vegetable fritters, are guava and cheese “hamantaschen” simply a filo-dough pastry that’s formed (or perhaps forced) into a three-cornered shape?
It really comes down to your interpretation of a classic. Is it the flavor? Shape? Ingredients? Cooking method?
For us, we’ll no doubt be baking and enjoying the tried and true traditional varieties we’ve tested on Rocky Mountain Jew in earlier years. However, we must admit we are tempted by some of the new interpretations. Specifically the hot dog one, which actually just sounds like a great Super Bowl party snack. So for those readers who are more adventurous — check out these recipes and let us know if they hit your hamantaschen sweet spot.
Recipes and photographs courtesy of the Nosher