Monday, September 20, 2010

Hungarian Kiffle- Eggless Cookie

Hungarian Kiffle

I had Hungarian Kiffle for the first time in Ohio. During the Christmas potluck at work, one of my co-worker used to bring a platter of these quaint shaped cookies. Now, let me tell you...these are not your usual Nestle Cookie dough slapped on a baking sheet...bleh. No No...these little morsels are divine. The filling is exotic yet simple. Apricot, crushed walnut, almond paste and prune..yum. Basically, you could tell that it took a lot of time and lot of love to make these phenomenal creations. Needless to say, I chased my co-worker  to share her great grandmother's recipe. The scrap of paper on which I wrote down the recipe was filed away safely and forgotten, until yesterday. I decided to muster the courage and make these cookies for my dear friends as part of the 25th post Giveaway.

This pastry dough has LOTS of butter and cream cheese but very little sugar. Sweetness comes from the different filling and the powdered sugar that is dusted on these cookies right before they are served with a cup of dark coffee or mint tea.  My friend's great grandmother used to make her own filing using dry fruits which takes a loooooong time. The new generation uses canned filing for the cookies. Please use Solo brand pie filing. This is a European brand that makes delectable filings for cookies. DO NOT USE FRUIT JAMS. The filing bubbles and thickens in the oven, some fruit jams will burn and become bitter. Solo is available in local Publix. I used apricot and poppy seed. If you can find a can of prune filing, grab it. Prune kiffle, also called 'Lekvar' are the best!

This pastry is tricky to work with because of the high butter/fat content. You have to work quickly and refrigerate the dough often.

Now, if you don't want to do all the work then there is an easier albeit an expensive way for you to still savor kiffles. You can order kiffles from the Kiffle Kitchen Bakery located in PA here 

Hungarian Kiffle:
Makes 36 cookies
2 1/4 cup All Purpose flour
1 cup of unsalted Butter which is equal to 2 sticks of unsalted butter-at room temperature
8 oz cream cheese-at room temperature
1 tbsp of milk
1 Tbsp powdered sugar
Pinch of salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 cans of 12 ounce pie filling
Lots of Plastic wrap/wax paper

1) In a glass bowl, cream butter for 5 minutes using a hand mixer. Add cream cheese and continue the creaming process for another 5 minutes. This is an important step to get flaky pastry. Now add milk and sugar. Continue blending.
2) Sift flour, baking powder and salt.
3) Add flour mixture to the butter  mixture to form a loose dough. The dough will be nice and moist but not sticky.
4) Break the dough into 4 equal parts. Use two sheets of  flour dusted plastic wrap to sandwich the dough ball. Using your fingers press down the dough to form a 1/2 inch thick square sheet. Repeat for the remaining dough portions. You will end up with 4 dough sheets each sandwiched between plastic wraps.
5) Chill for 1 hour. The dough with the plastic wraps will look like the frozen parantha you get from the Indian store.
6)Preheat the oven to 375 degree.
7) Take only one sheet of the dough out of the refrigerator. If the sheet is frozen hard. let it sit on the counter for couple minutes. Using a rolling pin, roll over the plastic wrap to make 1/8 inch thick square ( as thick as a roti). The butter will melt in this process making it difficult to work, so pop the sheet back into the fridge for 3-4 minutes.
8) Take out the 1/8 inch thick sheet, using a pizza cutter trim the square to get even edges. Trims can be used again. Now cut out 2'-2' inch squares. Again, if need be, pop the sheet in the refrigerator to stiffen.
9) Put 1/2 tsp of filing in the center of the 2' inch square. Fold and pinch the opposite sides of the square, to form a swaddle around the filing.
10) Working very quickly transfer the cookies from the plastic sheet to the baking sheet. Lay them 1 inch apart on a greased baking sheet.
11) Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden. Cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.


  1. hmmmm......yummmmm looks delish...i am seriuosly considering to moving to atlanta:)

  2. Something i dont see myself making (I am lazy;))..but they look really good..good work Neelam!

  3. was a lot of work ... After working with numbers all day, sometimes its good to do something creative that I can also EAT..yeah!

  4. I received my box of these and we have been enjoying them with evening tea. Thanks for the yummy treat!!!

  5. I've made these before and they actually taste better if you don't let them get to the golden stage...right before they turn golden and the dough is still light. I also use less flour so the dough stays moist, only about 2 cups. The dough is not as flaky and melts in your mouth. Also i do use jam and it does expand but cooking it less time also keeps it from turning bitter and the pie filling just doesn't taste as fresh as jam so i reccomend buying fresh homemade jam and trying that out. love this recipe though. so simple and delicious :)

  6. A Christmas tradition that has never been broken! My mom made 4 dozen at a time......2 dozen lekvar and 2 dozen apricot. I have kept the tradition - also, I make my own 'prune butter' and apricot spread...boiling bulk prunes and apricots with is a little harder to find real lekvar here in NH.

  7. How much sugar? Recipe looks like my banes but theres no sugar measurement

  8. My grandme made these every year with apricot and poppy filling. I make them now with my daughter at Christmas and she loves them!