On a recent weekend while vacationing in Ashland Oregon, I tasted a couple of roll cookies my sister had made. I said to Carole please share the recipe for these cookies and she replied that they were made using Nona’s old recipe; you just use her ‘magic dough’. OK, I dragged out Nona’s magic dough recipe, from her hamentashen recipe, made it, chopped up some walnuts and I was ready to experiment.
Have you all realized that Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) is in 5 weeks, beginning September 16th! Oh my gosh, it is time to start baking, freezing, creating menus, and inviting guests. Last night I emailed my first batch of invitations to the family for the first night and I wrote out the first draft of my menu. The Simanim or Yehi Ratzones, ceremonial starters, and desserts for Rosh Hashanah dinner take a lot of time to make. I bring it up because these cookies are perfect for after dinner or after lunch, coffee or tea. Roll cookies are nice to take to someone else’s home. This recipe is parave or dairy-free, good after any meal.
Makes around 50 cookies
4 extra large eggs beaten
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon white vinegar (like Heinz)
fresh zest from one orange
1/4 cup orange juice (fresh)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups flour
3/ 4 teaspoons baking powder
3 cups more flour
1 cup peach or apricot preserves
1 cup raisins
1 cup walnuts chopped in small pieces
Beat eggs and sugar together in a large bowl. Combine rest of liquid ingredients and zest in order given and whisk to combine. Add salt to two cups of flour, stir and add flour to liquids, beat batter until just smooth. Add baking powder to remaining flour in a small bowl, stir to combine, and add it in to to large bowl of batter. Combine to make soft dough.   Divide dough into 3 balls. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for later use or wrap two balls, set aside and begin to make cookies. 
Roll out first ball into a rectangle about the size of a piece of paper, 8 inches by 11 inches, on a lightly floured work surface. Spread 1/3 of preserves over dough, leaving a 1/ 2 inch boarder on the long side. Sprinkle 1/3 of raisins and 1/3 of walnuts over dough and preserves. 
Heat oven to 350° F. Starting with the long side, roll up dough tightly into a cylinder. Cylinder should be about 11 inches long. Place cylinder seam side down on parchment paper or silpat lined rimmed baking sheet. Roll out next ball and repeat. 
Place baking sheet in oven and bake for about 25 minutes until golden. Remove cookie rolls from oven and carefully place each roll on a cutting board using a long offset spatula. Drop oven temperature to 280° F. 
Slice rolls into individual cookies about 1/ 2 inch thick and place them back on lined baking sheet. Return cookies to reduced temperature oven for about 5 minutes to dry out a bit. Remove cookies from oven and allow them to cool. Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature or you can freeze them for up to a month.