Discover the secret to making traditional Polish Kolaczki cookies, perfect for the holiday season. Follow our step-by-step guide to create these delightful pastries with a cream cheese-based dough and your choice of sweet fillings. Experience the joy of baking these treats that taste like tiny pastries, ideal for holiday cookie tins. This recipe, adapted from a family favorite, promises a unique and delicious addition to your festive celebrations.
Can I use different types of fillings for Kolaczki?
Absolutely! While the recipe suggests Solo brand fillings, you can use various jams, preserves, or even homemade fillings. Popular flavors include cherry, almond, raspberry, plum, poppy seed, and cream cheese.
How do I store Kolaczki and how long do they last?
Store Kolaczki in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. For longer storage, they can be refrigerated for up to two weeks or frozen for up to three months.
Can I make the dough ahead of time?
Yes, the dough can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to two days or in the freezer for up to a month. Just ensure it’s well-wrapped to prevent drying out.
My dough is too sticky to roll. What should I do?
If the dough is too sticky, chill it longer. You can also use more powdered sugar when rolling it out to prevent sticking.
How do I know when the Kolaczki are done baking?
Kolaczki are done when they are just barely browned. They won’t change much in color but will feel set to the touch. Overbaking can make them too hard.
- 1 cup (2 sticks, 226 gr) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 8 oz (225 gr) cream cheese, room temperature
- 2 1/4 cups (270 gr) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- Solo brand filling of choice (e.g., cherry, almond, raspberry, plum, poppy seed, cream cheese)
- Powdered sugar (for rolling and dusting)
- Prepare the Dough:
- In a large mixing bowl, cream together the room temperature butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy.
- Add vanilla extract and kosher salt. Mix until these are evenly incorporated.
- Gradually mix in the all-purpose flour until just combined. The dough will be somewhat sticky.
- Flatten the dough between two pieces of plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 45 minutes until firm.
- Roll and Shape the Dough:
- After chilling, divide the dough in half.
- On a work surface dusted with powdered sugar, roll out one half of the dough to about 1/8 inch thickness. Aim for a rough square shape and trim any uneven edges.
- Using a pizza cutter or knife, cut the dough into 2-inch wide strips. Then cut across to create square pieces.
- Add the Filling:
- Choose your Solo brand filling or jam. Popular options include cherry, almond, raspberry, plum, poppy seed, or cream cheese.
- Spoon approximately 1 teaspoon of filling down the center of each square of dough.
- Form the Cookies:
- To seal the cookies, dab a bit of water on one corner of the dough square without filling.
- Fold the opposite corner of dough over the filling and press to seal. This prevents the cookies from opening during baking.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Place the formed cookies on a baking sheet. They do not spread much, so they can be placed fairly close together.
- Bake until the cookies are just barely brown. This will take about 10-15 minutes. They won’t change much in color but will be set when done.
- Cooling and Serving:
- Transfer the baked cookies to a cooling rack and allow them to cool completely.
- Before serving, dust the cookies generously with powdered sugar.
- Enjoy Your Kolaczkis:
- Your traditional Polish Kolaczkis are now ready to be enjoyed! Perfect as a holiday treat or a sweet addition to your cookie tin.
Tips for Perfect Kolaczki
- Room Temperature Ingredients: Ensure your butter and cream cheese are at room temperature for easier mixing and a smoother dough.
- Chill the Dough: Don’t skip chilling the dough, as it makes it easier to roll and shape the cookies.
- Powdered Sugar is Key: Use powdered sugar instead of flour for rolling out the dough to add a bit of sweetness and prevent sticking.
- Even Thickness: Roll the dough to an even thickness to ensure uniform baking.
- Seal the Edges Well: Make sure the edges of your Kolaczki are sealed well to prevent the filling from leaking out during baking.
- Don’t Overfill: A teaspoon of filling is enough for each cookie. Overfilling can cause the filling to spill out during baking.
- Cool Before Dusting: Wait for the cookies to cool completely before dusting with powdered sugar to prevent it from melting into the cookie.
- Experiment with Fillings: Feel free to experiment with different fillings to find your family’s favorite flavors.
- Baking in Batches: If baking in batches, keep the unbaked dough refrigerated until ready to roll and fill.
- Storing for Freshness: If not serving immediately, store them without the powdered sugar and dust just before serving for a fresh look.
Note: Feel free to experiment with different fillings to find your favorite combination. These cookies are a delightful blend of creamy dough and sweet filling, making them a unique and cherished part of holiday baking traditions.