In 2009, I was diagnosed with Celiac disease, right after baking and delivering a huge batch of hamantashen. Finally in 2013, I got out my gluten-free flours and my rolling pin and got to work. Now, I too can now enjoy Purim—with gluten-free hamantashen! Note that the challenge of gluten-free baking is that you can’t replace all-purpose flour with just one kind of gluten-free flour. Rather, you need to combine several different types to replicate the taste and textures that can be achieved with wheat flour. These days you can find some premixed all-purpose gluten-free flours. I haven’t tried them with this recipe, but you can try replacing the flours below with 2 cups gluten-free mix. Some mixes contain xanthan gum; if yours does, omit the teaspoon listed.
- ½ cup butter or margarine, softened
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons orange juice or milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup white rice flour
- 2/3 cup brown rice flour
- ½ cup potato starch
- ¼ cup tapioca starch
- 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Fillings of choice including fruit preserves, poppy seed and Nutella (my favorites are apricot, raspberry and poppy seed)
- Using a mixer on medium speed or a bowl and wooden spoon, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add egg, juice and vanilla, mixing until well incorporated. In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredient. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing and incorporating gradually until it all comes together. Shape dough into a ball, put in bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 2 hours, preferably 5 to 6 or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Divide dough in half, leaving the unused half in the refrigerator so it doesn’t get soft. Roll out dough thinly on a surface lightly dusted with white rice flour. I like to roll out the dough between two lightly floured sheets of parchment paper—it makes it easier to separate them if they stick, and the counter stays cleaner. Using a glass, jar or circle cookie cutter that’s 2½ to 3 inches across, cut out circles. Drop about 1 teaspoon of filling in the center of each circle and fold the edges over to form triangles. Overlap the dough or pinch the edges together to stay when baking.
- Transfer triangles to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Gather the scraps of dough and reroll, cutting more circles, filling and shaping into triangles. Repeat with the other half of dough. Once you fill a tray with hamantashen, either back immediately or stick it in the freezer or refrigerator while you roll out the rest of the dough. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden on the edges. Gluten-free baked goods tend to be lighter in color than those made with wheat flour, so don’t be surprised if they don’t get too golden.