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Master Dough Recipes

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A multi-purpose dough recipe which lends itself to a variety of pastries.

This orange-scented dough made with oil is extra quick and easy and produces crisp, old-fashioned (bubbie style) hamantashen. This is the homey dough most people remember from their youth. Don't forget, my cookbook Jewish Holiday Baking and this site, have tons of other hamantashen doughs (and fillings!). It's one of my pet things to bake.

Recipe includes some suggested fillings.

Self Rising flour is a specialty of Southern baking but it's certainly nationally available and a flour homemakers used since the 50's or so (would have to check on that!). It conveniently contains salt and baking powder so a home baker could use it without adding additional salt or baking powder in a recipe. The thing is, some recipes also need baking soda which one would still have to add separately (in an acidic recipe, such as a cocoa based chocolate cake, figure on 1/2 teaspoon baking soda per cup of flour in the recipe). Self rising flour keeps a few months (and then the baking powder starts to lose its oomph).

This is ideal for homemade strudels, hors d’oeuvres, potato knishes, quiche, pies or tarts. It freezes like a dream and you can made a few batches in a food processor in minutes. It is a crisp, tender, buttery dough that is a bit like puff pastry but low tech. You can use yogurt to replace the sour cream but do not use low-fat sour cream (too watery). ONe of my all-time favorites doughs. Oh! Did I tell you it makes sublime rugulah?

A variation on the traditional "pate brisee". You can use all butter (I prefer it) or shortening - if you want a flakier pastry dough - that shortening helps provide - but the taste and browning is better with all butter.

Melt in your mouth.

Spelt is one of those highly nutritious ancient wheats. People with gluten sensitivity sometimes find it easier to digest but for anyone seeking added food value in their favourite bagel, this is a perfect recipe. These are crusty, chewy, moist and full of flavour, and heart-healthy affairs. There is just enough whole-wheat and spelt to be extra-healthy and enough unbleached white bread flour to ensure the bagels are not dry. A little ground flaxseed is on the inside and flaxseed and sesame seeds coat the outside. Easy to make, these bagels also freeze well and bread machines do a super job making the dough. I make dough batches, (having the bread machine mix a batch whilst I am simmering and baking the first batch of bagel dough). Health food stores sell malt powder or you can use some malt syrup (health food stores or beer-brewing stores should stock it). By the way, if you can find it, the newer White Spelt flour makes sublime bagels.

The skinny on basic pie dough techniques.
This is a classic pastry used by the professionals. Use it for any filling or presentation.
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