Southern food and Jewish tradition. Put them together and what have you got? Pure unadulterated awesomeness. That's what. This holiday cookie mashup turns one of the South's most prized cookies, the benne wafer, into the Jewish people's favorite holiday cookie, the hamantasch. The benne wafer is a sophisticated, delectable cookie popular in the coastal regions of South Carolina and Georgia. The benne seed, more commonly known as sesame seed, has graced authentic southern recipes for generations, ever since being brought over from West Africa on slave-trade ships in the 17oos. Boasting a rich, sweet, and distinctly nutty flavor, it's about time this quintessential Southern classic is combined with this Purim holiday favorite. And there's even great significance to eating seed-based cookies on the holiday. According to tradition, Esther, the heroin of the Purim story, became a vegetarian upon moving into the king's palace in order to avoid eating non-kosher food. To sustain herself, she subsisted on a diet of legumes, nuts, and seeds, all of which are rich in nutrients. In recognition of her heroism and to highlight the miracle of Purim, we have the custom to eat seed- based foods on the holiday. Ain't it great that this fits the bill? Enjoy, y'all.
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a mixer with the paddle attached, beat together the oil, brown sugar, white sugar, eggs, vanilla, toasted sesame oil, and salt, until creamy.(Note: Start mixing at a slower speed to prevent ingredients from "jumping out" and increase speed as seen fit.) Gradually add the flour, baking powder, and sesame seeds and continue beating until well combined. (If the dough is a little sticky/moist, add a little flour until dough is firm enough to work with. You can also refrigerate it, as cold dough is easier to work with.) Divide the dough in half and roll out each half, one at a time until the dough is about 1/8-inch thick. Cut out hamantaschen with a 3-inch round cookie cutter. Place the cut cookie dough rounds on a baking tray lined with baking paper and fill with a 1/2 tablespoon of peach preserves in the center. Fold the dough around the filling to form a triangular shape and pinch the corners to seal. Bake for approximately 15 minutes, turning half way through baking.