Dried Fruit and Poppy Seed Rugelach Spirals


These traditional Hanukkah treats are formed in little crescents, keeping their delicious fillings hidden from view. In this version, the cookies are formed like little cinnamon rolls, the better to see the mixture of dried fruit, nuts, and jam swirled within the rich cookie.

By Robin Asbell

Total Time: 4 hours; 30 minutes active

Servings: 16 cookies


  • 3 oz. cream cheese, diced
  • 1 stick butter, chilled
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt


  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp dried tart cherries, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp walnuts, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp pecans, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1/4 cup cherry preserves


  • Dice the cream cheese and butter, then put on a plate and chill. In a food processor, blend the flour, sugar, and salt. When butter and cheese are cold and firm, add to processor and pulse, until dough just comes together. Form the dough into a rectangle about an inch thick and wrap tightly in plastic. Chill at least two hours.
  • Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper and reserve. To make cookies, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix the cinnamon, cherries, walnuts, pecans and poppy seeds in a bowl. Dust a countertop with flour. Take out dough and roll out to 1/4 inch thickness to an 18×10 inch rectangle. Spread the dough with cherry preserves, then sprinkle with cinnamon mixture. Roll up like a cinnamon roll, starting with the long side to make an 18-inch long roll. Slice in four equal portions, then slice each of those in four. Place the slices on the parchmented pan, with an inch of space between them. Flatten each with your palm to less than 1/2 inch thick.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, rotate the pan, bake 15 minutes more. Depending on your oven, you may need more time. The tops of the cookies will be golden brown when done.
  • Transfer to wire racks right away. Cool. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Nutritional Information

194 calories, 9 g fat, 21 mg cholesterol, 151 mg sodium, 34 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 2 g protein

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