Thursday, March 15, 2012

Savory Nettle and Feta Rugelach

I may be doing some serious rule breaking by calling these rugelach, but who ever said you've got to follow the rules, especially in the kitchen. And yes, it is that time again when I shove nettles in front of you whether you are a fan or not. Past recipes are generally for nettle lovers only, but this one transcends favor. Feta, garlic, sweet onion and sauteed nettles swaddled in butter pastry; who wouldn't fall for them? The impressive little rolls make a great addition to any springtime party or tea. Enjoy!

Savory Nettle and Feta Rugelach:
*about 6 cups loosely packed fresh stinging nettle
*3 tablespoons high quality butter
*1 small onion, chopped
*sea salt and pepper
*1 egg
1/4 cup whole milk plain Greek yogurt
*1/4 cup (or whatever makes you happy) crumbled feta cheese
*1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced

Rinse nettles. Drain on a kitchen towel and pat dry. Working in batches, pulse nettles in a food processor until coarsely chopped. Transfer to a bowl.
Place butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and saute until clear and aromatic. Add nettles and a splash of water. Saute for about 5 minutes until nettles are fully wilted but still bright green. Season lightly with sea salt and pepper.
Transfer to a bowl and cool completely.
Add remaining ingredients and blend thoroughly with a rubber spatula.

Pastry Dough:
*1 1/4 cup organic AP flour
*1 teaspoon sea salt
*1 stick high quality unsalted butter
*3-4 tablespoons ice water

Preheat oven to 375.
Place flour and salt in a food processor. Pulse. Add the butter and blend until it resembles a course meal. Slowly pour in the ice water with blade running until dough forms.
Turn out onto a floured work surface. Form dough into a disk and wrap in parchment. Chill for 15 minutes.
Return dough to work surface. Roll out with a rolling pin to about 1/4 inch thickness.

Evenly spread nettle filling over pasty. Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, cut approximately 12 pie shaped wedges in dough.

Starting with the wide end, gently roll each wedge toward its tip. Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet, allowing an inch of space between each rugelach.

In a small bowl, whisk one egg yolk with a splash of cold water. Brush egg wash over pastry dough.

Bake for about 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.

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