savoury challenge a while back, but the only cheese which I think will work in sweet chocolate baking is cream cheese, and I'm guessing that most entrants to the challenge will use this too. I'd have liked to conjure up something using 'real' cheese, but my imagination just wasn't up to it!
Although they didn't really follow the rules of the faith once in this country, my parents-in-law were Jewish immigrants, escaping from Hitler's invasion of Eastern Europe. My mother-in-law was a great cook and her Jewish heritage still influenced the things she baked.
Rugelach are a small croissant style pastry made with cream cheese in the dough, and with varied fillings, often including chocolate, which make them ideal for this challenge.
There are dozens of Rugelach recipes around, but most are very similar, although some recipes for the dough add sour cream and/or egg yolks. For a guideline on quantities and techniques, I used this recipe from Dorie Greenspan, although I only cut 12 pieces from each circle of dough.
As I was making the dough by hand, I brought the butter and cream cheese right up to room temperature, then chilled it for 24 hours before making the cookies.
The filling is all my own invention, although I dare say a trawl of every single recipe online would produce something similar. I used about 1/3 of a jar of dark chocolate spread; 100g dried cherries, finely chopped and steeped with two tablespoons of Kirsch and half a teaspoon of cinnamon; 100g of finely chopped milk chocolate (I thought the filling would need the sweetness of milk chocolate, but I still used a good quality chocolate with high cocoa solids(39%)) and 25g of finely chopped toasted hazelnuts. Half the chocolate spread was spread evenly over each pastry circle and the other ingredients sprinkled on top in turn, before cutting and rolling the wedges.
We Should Cocoa is a monthly challenge co-hosted by Chele at Chocolate Teapot and Choclette at Chocolate Log Blog. Each month participants are given an ingredient (or method) which must be used in a chocolate product. The full rules are available here if you would like to join in. This month's challenge, to use cheese, was chosen by Choclette.