Mark Boughton Photography / styling by Teresa Blackburn
  • Yield: 36 pieces
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins

A Hanukkah tradition, these bite-size crescent-shaped cookies can have any of several fillings including raisins, nuts, poppy-seed paste or jam. The dough must be made a day ahead and refrigerated.


1package (8-ounce) cream cheese, at room temperature
1cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
1 2/3cups all-purpose flour
2/3cup sugar
1tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 1/3cups finely chopped walnuts
4tablespoons butter, melted
1-- egg yolk, beaten with 1 teaspoon milk


  1. To prepare dough, beat cream cheese and butter together with a mixer at medium speed until smooth and fluffy. Gradually add half the flour, beating at low speed only until blended. Stir in remaining flour.
  2. Scrape dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Turn to coat with flour and divide into thirds. Shape each portion into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.
  3. Preheat oven to 350F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment.
  4. To prepare filling, combine sugar, cinnamon and walnuts.
  5. Roll one portion of dough on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch circle. Brush with one-third of the butter and sprinkle with one-third of the walnut mixture. Cover with wax paper and press filling into dough. Remove wax paper. Cut into 12 wedges. Roll each wedge from its wide edge, and set rolls point side down on a baking sheet, 1 inch apart. Repeat with remaining dough, butter and filling.
  6. Brush rolls lightly with egg yolk mixture. Bake about 30 minutes, until pastries are golden brown. Rotate baking sheets top to bottom and front to back during baking to ensure even browning. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Recipe adapted with permission from Greg Patent’s A Baker’s Odyssey (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2007).

Nutritional Info *per serving

  • Calories 140
  • Glycemic Load 3
  • Fat 11g
  • Saturated Fat 5g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
  • Monounsaturated Fat 3g
  • Cholesterol 30mg
  • Sodium 75mg
  • Potassium 45mg
  • Carbohydrate 9g
  • Fiber 1g
  • Sugars 4g
  • Protein 2g
  • Trans Fat 0g
  • Vitamin A 6%
  • Vitamin C 0%
  • Calcium 2%
  • Iron 2%