Black Olive and Parmesan Rugelach

11:30 am on 8 October 2012

Rugelach is a Jewish pastry made in the form of a crescent by rolling a triangle of pastry around a filling, which is usually sweet. I created this savoury version to provide a compact do-ahead pass-around item that can be served cold or warm.

(Makes 32)


  • 190g unsalted butter (diced and at room temperature)
  • 60g (½ cup + 1 tbsp + 1 tsp) walnut or wholemeal flour
  • 175g (¾ cup less 1 tbsp) cream cheese (cubed and at room temperature)
  • 280g (2 cups) flour
  • pinch of allspice
  • ¼ tsp Hungarian-style paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 300g Black Olive Tapenade
  • 80g (1¼ cups) finely grated Parmesan
  • 1 egg (lightly beaten)
  • 15ml (1 tbsp) water


Lightly grease 2 baking trays with baking spray or additional butter.

To make pastry, place butter, walnut or wholemeal flour and cream cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade.

Sift flour, allspice, paprika, salt and pepper into a bowl. Add half this mixture to the bowl of the food processor and pulse to just combine. Add remaining flour mixture and pulse until pastry begins to form a ball.

Tip pastry onto a lightly floured bench and knead. Cut into equal-sized halves, roll each into a ball and pat down to a disc shape. Wrap well in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Lightly flour a clean bench and roll out one of the pastry discs to form a 40cm round, about 3mm thick. Trim the outer edge to neaten. Using a spatula, spread it with half the Black Olive Tapenade and sprinkle with half the Parmesan. Cut the round into 16 equal wedges. Roll wedges up from the wide edge to the narrow point. Curl into crescent shapes. Repeat process with the second pastry disc.

Place on prepared trays and chill for 30 minutes or up to a day. (Or cover and freeze for up to 1 month. Proceed to next stage of recipe when required. Bake from frozen at same temperature as recipe and for almost the same time.)

In a small bowl combine egg and water. Brush each rugelach with egg wash. Bake for 15–20 minutes or until pastry is golden brown and cooked through. Remove from oven and serve warm, or cool and reheat later.

Wine match

Sacred Hill Virgin 2011

Reproduced with permission from Ruth Pretty Cooks at Home by Ruth Pretty.
Published by Penguin Group NZ.
Copyright © text, Ruth Pretty, 2012.

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