This is Rugulah….a rich cream cheese butter pastry filled with nuts. It is absolutely delicious and a real family favorite, as well as a favorite holiday treat of my customers. Many people would buy this as a gift for neighbors, family or friends.
I have been making it for years. I always fill it with nuts, which is my favorite way, but you can also use apricot or raspberry jam.
It is one of my favorites. Sweet and delicious, perfect with coffee in the morning or anytime! It is easy to make, I hope you will try it!
- 2 8-ounce softened blocks of cream cheese
- 1 cup softened butter
- 4 cups flour
For the filling:
- 2 cups sugar
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1 lb. ground nuts (I used a mixture of walnuts and pecans)
First put the butter and cream cheese into your mixer bowl. Cream them together well. Now add the flour and blend well till you get a nice dough. It will be stiff. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and form into a rectangle. I like to make mine bigger and thinner, you will have a much easier time when rolling the dough after chilling it.
Wrap up your dough rectangle with plastic wrap and chill for a few hours. You can also make the dough a day or two ahead and chill it till you are ready to bake.
Now prepare your filling while the dough is chilling. Place the sugar and milk into a big saucepan and bring to a boil, boil for a couple of minutes, now add the ground nuts and stir well. It will seem somewhat liquidy, but will thicken up as it cools.
Now prepare your baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
When your dough is chilled, bring it out of the fridge and unwrap it, and let it sit for about 10 minutes or so.
Set your oven to 350*
Now that you have rolled out your dough, and this takes a bit of time, make sure you roll it about 12 inches wide and about 20 inches long. Place the cooled nut mixture on the dough, the use an offset spatula to spread it out. Cover the entire surface coming all the way to the edges, except on the back side long edge. Leave about 1 1/2 inches with no nut mixture.
Now roll the dough as shown, until you get a big, long dough, as shown. You want the roll to be as even as possible, so when you have it rolled up, you can manipulate the roll as you go, gently squeezing and pulling till you get a nice log.
When you have your roll, first you want to cut it into 3 pieces, as this makes 3 rugulahs. When you have divided into 3 pieces, take 1 piece and cut it in half, but not cutting all the way through, then each half into thirds, then each 1/4 into 3 pieces, not cutting all the way through. Now do this with each of the other rugulahs. I place them on the sheet pan to cut, see the photos above.
When you have them all cut and on the sheet pan, place in a hot oven and bake about 25 minutes.
Now that the rugulah are baked, let them cool completely. You can leave them on the baking sheet to cool. While the rugulah is cooling, cover 3 pieces of cardboard with foil.
When the rugulah are cool, cover them with powdered sugar. Now place each one onto a foil covered board, then wrap with plastic wrap. You can keep these on the counter for a few days, or freeze them, which is what I do. That way you have them baked and ready when family or friends come around.
To serve, slice through the sections, each rugulah will give you 12 generous slices.
Now grab a cup of coffee, a slice or 2 and enjoy!