The cookie craze continues, with this week’s recipe starring bittersweet chocolate chunks rolled into flaky cream cheese dough. Being in the second week of December, I seem to be hitting my yearly quota of white flour and sugar on an almost daily basis. And this recipe for Chocolate Rugelach, or “little twists,” takes the indulgence a step further by cutting cream cheese into a buttery dough sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and rich chocolate chunks.
I splurged on a higher end chocolate simply because it’s the centerfold of this dessert. Scharffen Berger makes incredible baking bars and baking chunks with a quality and taste that’s hard to match. And if you’re looking to save a little time, you can freeze the unbaked regulach then defrost them and bake off batches as needed.
Yield: 4 dozen
- For the cream cheese dough:
- 1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, cold and cubed
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- 2 1/2 cups flour, plus additional for rolling out the dough
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- For the chocolate filling:
- 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces or shavings
- 4 Tablespoons butter, melted
- Make the dough by combining the cream cheese, butter, flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse the ingredients together until the fat becomes evenly dispersed within the flour (the dough will be crumbly but still stick together).
- Shape the dough into a ball, place it into a bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough for one hour or up to one day.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and cut it into 4 pieces. Place 3 pieces back into the refrigerator.
- Combine the cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Place the ball of dough on a lightly floured surface, and using a rolling pin, roll it into a circle that's about 1/8-inch thick. The dough will be very hard, so it's best to first beat it down with a rolling pin (as if you were making puff pastry). It will loosen up as it comes to room temperature.
- Immediately brush the rolled out dough with one-fourth of the melted butter and sprinkle it with one-fourth of the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Sprinkle one-fourth of the chocolate onto the dough, pressing it lightly into the dough.
- Cut the dough into 12 wedges.
- Roll each wedge up, starting from the thickest end, until you form a crescent shape.
- Repeat the rolling, topping and shaping process with the other three pieces of dough.
- Place the rugelach on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and refrigerate it for 30 minutes. (You can also freeze the rugelach at this point for later use.)
- Bake the rugelach in a 350ºF oven for 18 to 20 minutes until golden brown. Transfer the rugelach to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
Recipe adapted from BellaOnline.