Slovak Rožcky for the Feasts of St. Cyril & St. Methodius
These cookies are perfect for celebrating the Feasts of St. Cyril and St. Methodius on February 14, brothers and missionaries to the Slavic people. St. Cyril (originally named Constantine) died in 869. His brother continued with his mission, becoming a bishop and returning to Moravia.
Rozcky—or roszke, roski, rozky, or roscici—are crescent-shaped filled cookies, known more commonly as Slovak Crescent Cookies. These sweets are enjoyed by many peoples, including Czechs, Slovaks, Poles and Hungarians. There is even a Hungarian town named Roszke.
“This recipe is a traditional and delicious Slovak one for a jelly or nut-filled pastry. My Slovak grandparents lived next door to the parish of Sts. Cyril and Methodius, in Joliet, Illinois, where my grandfather was a beloved church organist. My grandmother made these cookies at Christmastime, but they are also appropriate for family gatherings and special holidays. This is my version of this traditional recipe.”
— Katherine E. Harmon
Makes about 20 rožckies
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup sour cream
2 egg yolks, beaten
2 tbsp water
Confectioner’s sugar for sprinkling
½ cup finely chopped walnuts
¼ cup honey
1 tsp sugar
2 egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks
Fruit jelly, such as apricot jelly,
Homemade or store bought
Put the butter into a large mixing bowl. Cut the butter into the flour, as if making pie dough. Add the sour cream, egg yolks, and water. Combine well with a fork to form a dough. Separate the dough into two equal-sized balls. Refrigerate, covered, till cool, about 2 hours.
Meanwhile, make the nut filling: mix walnuts, honey, sugar, and cinnamon. Fold into the beaten egg whites and combine.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly dust a flat surface with confectioner’s sugar. Roll out one ball of dough to about ¼-inch thickness. Slice into 4-inch squares. Place a small spoonful of nut filling and a small spoonful of jelly filling into a corner of each square. Roll the square away from you, and gently shape into a crescent.
Place crescents seam side down about 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Repeat for second ball of dough. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven, and sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar.
Purchase a copy of the Cooking for Christ cookbook here.