I lived in Ann Arbor, Michigan during two separate time periods in my life. The first time (2007) was to live a quieter, less expensive life during the months leading up to my year in Israel and the second time (2009 – 2011) was to attend Social Work School at The University of Michigan. It was during my first night in Ann Arbor, in 2007, that I met Jackie.
I was biding my time, really. I had just moved in with my extremely patient and loving friend, Joel, who had gotten me a part-time gig as a program director at Michigan’s Hillel. I had left everyone I knew and loved behind in Chicago and was excited to get to Israel already. Ann Arbor was quaint and adorable (and freezing) but it had a purpose and that was to offer me a place to bide my time. I had agreed to go with Joel to a Hillel graduate student bar night because I wanted to be a good friend and co-worker (Joel just also happened to be my new boss) but I was in no mood to go out. I hadn’t been at the bar more than 15 minutes when Joel introduced me to Jackie. It was love at first sight. Within minutes we had decided to move on to another bar where we could go dancing (until the wee hours of the night, as it turned out). If it we decided we might be friends while at the bar, it was on the dance floor that we sealed the deal and decided (without saying anything) that we would be friends for ever. From that night on, we were inseparable.
It’s been seven years since we met that night in Ann Arbor. Since that night, Jackie agreed to lead a Birthright trip just so she could visit me in Israel (where she counseled me into attending Social Work School, one of the best decisions of my life). We’ve been there for each other through heart breaks and finally finding our basherts. We’ve been there for each other during stressful wedding planning and major career decisions. And now, most recently, we’ve been there for each other as we brought our daughters into this world.
This past Sunday was the first time our girls got to hang out together and it was one of the sweetest days of my life. Siona could not get enough of ‘baby’ and Violet just hung out and spent the day being lovely and peaceful. When both girls went down for a nap, it was cookie time. Since Jackie (in partnership with our third Musketeer, Annie) is one of the people who inspired me to start cooking, it only seemed appropriate that we spend some time cooking together. I was inspired to do a hamantaschen based on my favorite Girl Scout cookie, the Thin Mint. My girl Amy over at What Jew Wanna Eat must have the same genius thinking because she just posted a similar cookie today. Mine is a little different as it focuses on that sweet, decadent chocolate and the mint is brought in via a subtle peppermint glaze. And, if peppermint isn’t your thing, just leave it out and you have yourself a delicious chocolate hamantaschen that will please all your friends and family.
- Makes 2 dozen (give or take a couple)
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup oil
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 6 cups flour
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon strong coffee
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup large chocolate chips (semi sweet or milk will work. I used milk chocolate)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 tsp peppermint oil
- 3 tablespoons milk
- Preheat Oven: 350 degrees
- In a medium mixing bowl, mix together eggs, oil, sugar, and vanilla.
- Next, add baking powder and flour to the bowl and mix well to combine. Finally, add the cocoa and strong coffee and give it one more good stir (dough should be thick, almost like bread dough).
- Knead the dough until smooth.
- Flour a rolling pin and roll out to roughly 1/8 inch thin on a floured board.
- Using a round cookie cutter or a drinking glass with a wide opening, cut out circles (use the scraps to make cookies as well, just keep forming into a large ball and rolling out thin and repeat process until dough is done).
- Drop a handful of chocolate chips (should be roughly 10 chips or more) into the center of each circle.
- Have a glass or small bowl of a little bit of cold water near by so that you can dip your fingers in to help fold the dough into three sides over the filling forming a triangle (water acts as a glue to the dough and will help edges stick).
- Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes on a lined cookie sheet.
- Once fully cooked, let cool for at least 5 - 10 minutes. While cooling, place the powdered sugar, peppermint oil and milk into a small bowl and stir until milky consistency.