by: Steve Dunn
For the dough:
- 2¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the work surface
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into chunks and chilled
- 8 ounces cream cheese, cut into chunks
- 2 tablespoons sour cream or Greek yogurt
- 2 large egg yolks (for an eggwash)
- ¼ cup granulated or crystal sugar for decorating
For the raisin filling:
- 3/4 cup raisins
- Enough water to cover the raisins
- 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup apricot preserves, pureed in a food processor
for the dough:
- Pulse the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse sand with some pea-size pieces of butter. Add the cream cheese and sour cream (or yogurt) until the batter starts to pull away from the side of the hopper and come together into a rough dough.
- Turn the dough out of the bowl onto a floured work surface and divide into 4 portions. Pat each portion into a thin rectangle, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for about an hour.
Meanwhile, make the raisin filling:
- Put the raisins in a medium saucepan and cover with the water. Add the sugars, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla. Simmer over low heat until almost all the water is absorbed and the raisins are plumped, about 30 minutes. Drain any excess water from the raisins and transfer them to a blender or food processor and pulse. Add the walnuts and process again to form a paste. Stir in the apricot jam and set aside to cool.
- Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line two half-sheet pans with parchment paper.
- Roll a portion of the dough into a rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Spread with 1/4 of the raisin paste. Starting with the long side, roll up the dough to make a tight cylinder. Flatten it a bit, and wrap in plastic wrap. Place the cylinder in the freezer or refrigerator, and continue this process with the remaining portions of dough.
- Slice the cylinders into 1½-inch pieces, and place each piece seam side down on the prepared pans. Whisk the egg yolks and brush over the tops. Sprinkle with granulated sugar.
- Bake about 25 minutes, or until golden and crispy.
- Cool for a few minutes on the pans. Transfer the rugelach to a wire rack to cool completely.
Makes about 3 dozen