Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Hungarian Jam Squares

Hungarian Jam Squares are a family favorite in this house.  Sweet jam is spread on a sugar cookie type base and topped with a lattice topping of more cookie dough, baked and topped with powdered sugar for a not too sweet treat that is perfect for the holidays or any time of the year! 

Hungarian Jam Squares| Renee's Kitchen Adventures  My husband's favorite cookie!



This is my husband's very favorite cookie. This time of year is all about traditions, and this cookie is a tradition that has been passed down through my husbands family for a few generations.  I was given the recipe I use for these from my mother-in-law. My husband's family lovingly call them "Strawberry Squares" because my mother-in-law has always made them with strawberry jam/preserves.  I, too,  have always just made them with strawberry jam/preserves because that's what my husband likes, but you can feel free to use any flavor you like!  Just make sure you use good quality jam or preserves, because that is where this cookie gets most of it's flavor and don't skimp on the amount either!  The recipe calls for a full quart of jam or preserves, and you will want to use every drop of that!   

Hungarian Jam Squares| Renee's Kitchen Adventures  My husband's favorite cookie!

The lattice topping might seem complicated to do, but it's not.  As you can see from my photo below, you do not need to be perfect with it.  You will end up cutting the cookies into squares anyway, and no one will notice the topping didn't come out perfect.  And of course, there is the powdered sugar topping, which pretty much covers up all imperfections!

Hungarian Jam Squares| Renee's Kitchen Adventures  My husband's favorite cookie!

These cookies are easy in that they bake all at once.  I use a jelly roll pan with sides that measures 15" x 10" and that is the only pan I have ever used to make these. If you don't have that size pan,  I would think you could give it a go with a 13" x 9" pan, but the cookies would be a little thicker.

The original recipe calls for the butter to be incorporated into the flour/sugar mixture with a pastry blender, but to make things easier, I make the dough entirely in the food processor.

If you are a fan of not-too-sweet treats, you might want to add this recipe to your holiday baking menu this year.  These squares are a nice addition to any cookie tray.

Hungarian Jam Squares

Renee's Kitchen Adventures
Hungarian Jam Squares
Fruit jam/preserves nestled between a sugar cookie base and a lattice sugar cookie topping.

Ingredients

  • 2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes
  • 2 large eggs, slightly beaten
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 quart of jam or preserves, any flavor
  • powdered sugar, to dust cookies with

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 15" x 10" jelly roll pan (with sides) with cooking spray and then line the bottom and up the two of the sides with parchment paper. (to help remove cookies when done)
  2. In large capacity food processor, with blade attached, add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Pulse a few times to combine.
  3. Add butter and process until butter incorporated into the flour.
  4. Add vanilla to the eggs, and while the processor is running, pour into the flour/butter mixture and process until a smooth dough. If it seems too sticky, add a little more flour. (you should be able to pick it up and shape it into a ball)
  5. Set aside 1/4 of dough and press the remaining dough into the bottom and sides of the prepared pan. Spread the jam evenly over the dough.
  6. With remaining half of dough, roll or press out into a rectangle, about 1/8 inch thick and cut into strips. Arrange dough strips over the jam in a criss cross pattern. ( you do not need to lattice them, just make them criss cross, by setting all the strips in one direction on the jam, and then go the other way with the rest) Press the edges to seal.
  7. Bake in the oven until lightly brown on the edges, about 25 -30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely before cutting into squares. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.
Yield: 24 to 36 bars, depending how you cut them
Prep Time: 00 hrs. 15 mins.
Cook time: 00 hrs. 30 mins.
Total time: 45 mins.
Tags: Cookies, jam, strawberry, preserves, sweets, dessert, sugar, bar cookies

*I'm not providing nutritional information for these cookies.  They are an indulgent treat.  Enjoy in moderation! 

Printable Recipe 
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5 comments:

  1. Hungarian Jam Squares? These sound delicious!!! Thanks for such a great recipe!

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  2. These look delicious and then learning they are your husband's favorite cookie, they are a must! Can't wait to try them!

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  3. I am Hungarian on my mom's side, I will have to try these when she is here for Christmas! She will love that they are Hungarian!

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  4. You are so nice to make your husband's favorites. I usually try to get my mom in law to make my hubby's faves. These look awesome!

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  5. Gorgeous job with these; I wish I could have just one bit. O.K., plateful. Love these.

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