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Cookie cleavage: How much is too much?

I took these pictures last Purim to illustrate a little-discussed aspect of the aspect of hamantashen baking: Cookie cleavage.

By this I mean, how much of the filling is left exposed? And if your dough relaxes during baking, and the cookie opens up a little, how much exposed filling do you consider acceptable? Do the laws of tzniut apply to cookie fillings in the Haredi communities? I'm just asking.

Very tightly buttoned up hamantashen, where you have to guess at the filling really were a problem for me as a child, since I loved prune-filled hamantashen, and hated I poppyseed. I threw away many a lump of poppyseed filling, after first eating the uncontaminated corners.

too tight hamantashen

The more relaxed ones, that show just a peek, a tiny bit of filling, are easier to figure out because you can at least tell the color of the filling. But the apricot-filled ones always went first at the parties, and I still threw out a few poppyseed hamantashen, thinking they were prune. Hebrew school was not that well lit.

As a baker, I can tell you I have agonized over this choice. In the end, I decided to adopt an open but not overly open cookie. I like to make hamantashen with homemade chocolate ganache filling. It is a very delicious cookie, and won the Hamantashen Bake-Off at Congregation Etz Chayim. I am proud of my chocolate filling, so I show it off.

just right hamantashen

But if I neglect to seal the corners of my hamantashen tightly enough, they relax, and open up, and I do not use it for my shalach manot plates.

too loose hamantashen

Because with the filling all exposed like that, the hamantashen become tarts. And that's a different kind of cookie.

array of hamantashen

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7 Comments

MS, "Devilishly Funny" makes me think of Devil's Food Hamantashen, I wonder if such a thing is possible?

Lillith covered that. That metaphor is a little too raw for me.

The fact that it's Purim AND Women's Day works out perfectly cause lady special parts are represented nicely by hamantashen... or should we call them hamansnatchen? Hamentwaten?

FormerFox, you are right. The whole issue of covering vs. not covering, and the trouble both can cause, were what got me thinking.

Sure gives one food for thought, when one thinks of the word "cookie" as a term of affection for a woman!

devilishly funny

Your cleavage is perfect, but you forgot the other temptation - overly endowed hamentashen!

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How to cite this page

Tramiel, Preeva. "Cookie cleavage: How much is too much?." 28 February 2012. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on July 22, 2017) <https://jwa.org/blog/cookie-cleavage-how-much-is-too-much>.

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