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How To Make Pecan Pie Rugelach For Thanksgivukkah

How pecans and corn syrup never found their way into buttery little pastry pinwheels before, we may never know. (See BuzzFeed's full Thanksgivukkah feature here.)

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PART III: Assemble and bake the rugelach.

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If your dough gets too warm the butter will melt and stick to the wooden surface. Don’t panic; just slide it onto one of your parchment lined baking sheets and stick it in the freezer for 5 minutes or so.

PECAN PIE RUGELACH

Makes 32 cookies

INGREDIENTS

Dough:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), cut into 8 pieces

1/2 cup cream cheese (4 oz), cut into 4 pieces

Filling:

2 cups shelled pecan halves

1/4 cup unsalted butter (½ stick), cut into 4 pieces

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup corn syrup

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

Egg wash:

1 egg

1 tablespoon water

Special equipment

Electric hand mixer

Plastic wrap

2 cookie sheets

Parchment paper

Rolling pin

Pizza cutter (not essential)

PREPARATION
Dough:

Let butter and cream cheese sit out at room temperature for 10 minutes, so that they are still cool but slightly soft. Combine flour and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer, mix on a low speed just until combined. Scatter butter and cream cheese pieces over the top of the flour mixture, and beat on medium speed until dough is the texture of cottage cheese, still slightly crumbly. Use your hands to divide the dough into 2 equal pieces, then roll each piece into a ball. Flatten each ball into a disk about 1 inch thick and 4 inches in diameter, then wrap each one separately in plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 2 hours, up to 1 day.

Filling:

Using a knife, finely chop pecans and put in a medium mixing bowl. (Do NOT do chop the nuts in a food processor. You want the pecans to be chopped but still coarse, and a food processor will turn them into nut butter.)

In a small saucepan over medium heat, brown the butter by adding all 4 pieces at once and constantly stirring with a heatproof spatula until completely melted. Continue to stir or swirl the pan as butter starts to bubble and foam. When the foam subsides slightly and butter turns a light brown color, take it off the heat immediately and add the it to the chopped pecans. Add vanilla extract, corn syrup, and brown sugar, and mix with a rubber spatula just until combined.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Beat egg yolk with the tablespoon of water and set aside.

When dough is chilled, unwrap one disk onto a lightly floured surface, and roll with a rolling pin into a 12-inch circle. It is important to have an even, symmetrical circle, so trim any excess. If dough gets too soft during rolling, lay it on one of the lined baking sheets and put it in the freezer for 5 minutes, until slightly chilled. Once the dough is rolled out, sprinkle half of the pecan mixture on top of the dough, all the way to the edges of the circle, making sure the mixture is evenly distributed. With a pizza cutter (or a knife), cut dough into 16 equal slices. Roll each slice from the outside in (starting the wide end and rolling towards the point), placing each roll onto the cookie sheet as you go. Repeat this process with the other disk of dough.

Use a pastry brush to coat the top of each cookie with the egg-water mixture. Bake rugelach for 20 minutes until golden, turning the cookie sheet halfway through baking.

Cool completely before serving.

See BuzzFeed's complete Thanksgivukkah menu here.

Photos by Macey J Foronda

Styling by John Gara

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