Kifli (traditional Slovak Christmas cookie) December 11, 2015 11:06

I think every family has a traditional holiday dessert or cookie. If I did not make these, there surely would be a mutiny at our house. My parent's family is from Eastern Europe though they came to the US many generations ago. They are from what is now Slovakia but previously was Czechoslovakia and before that was a part of Poland. In Slovakia, these are called kifli. In the Czech Republic they are called kolachy and in Poland, they are called kolaches. There are many variations of kifli/kolachy/kolache; some call for yeast, some call for sour cream but ours do not. The dough has only three ingredients and the quantities are easy to remember (1, 2, 3).

This video is for Polish kolaches, but they're very similar to our family's cookies: http://allrecipes.com/video/963/jam-kolaches/detail.aspx The video leaves out two important steps: the dough must be refrigerated because it has so much butter and you should roll it out on powdered sugar. Don't forget those steps! I would use our recipe (below) because it makes more. You'll need lots--these go fast.


1 - 8 oz package of cream cheese (softened)
2 - sticks butter (softened, NOT melted)
3 - cups of flour
1 box powdered sugar
1 - can of Solo brand Apricot Filling (look in the baking aisle. Don't use pie filling, it is too runny. Use jam if you must, but Solo is the best by far).

Mix the butter and cream cheese thoroughly.  Then add flour a little at a time, blending well.  It is best if you can use a stand mixer but if you don't have one you can use a hand mixer until it gets too stiff, then you might have to finish it by hand. The dough should be similar to Play Dough. Then shape the dough into 2 or 3 balls.   Wrap the individual balls in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or for as long as you can.

Roll a small piece of the dough on a board which has been covered with powdered sugar. Put the rest of the dough back in the fridge, so it doesn't get too soft. Keep rolling and flipping the dough over until it is very thin and about 8" in diameter.  Keep adding powdered sugar on the board so the dough doesn't stick. Cut the dough into triangles, like a pizza. Put a dab (approx 1/4 teaspoon) of the filling at the wide end, then roll them up toward the point so you have a crescent shape. Put the cookies on a tin foil lined baking tray.  Bake for 12 - 15 minutes at 375F.  Watch carefully - remove as soon as they start to brown slightly.  Immediately use a spatula to transfer the cookies to a wire cooling rack.  Be careful - the filling will be very hot and sticky. Repeat until you have about 200. Don't worry, they won't last.

There are additional fillings you can use in these cookies. Most traditional would be poppyseed (which I kinda hate) and walnut, which I am too lazy to make (and kinda hate). I like Solo raspberry and almond filling and I am thinking of making my own pecan filling this year. My father is outraged about the pecan filling, but this is Georgia and, frankly, pecans are far superior to walnuts.

Enjoy! And if you give these a try, post a picture.
PS-don't tell my dad I shared the recipe. He'd be outraged about that too!