This Hungarian Kieffles Cookies Recipe is a cherished family recipe from my friend. She was kind enough to share her recipe that has been handed down through the ages. Fruit filled light pastry cookie is a delight.
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Kniffles, Kiffles, or Kieffles
The recipe from my friend was written out on a recipe card and the title was Kniffles. I asked if the “k” was silent. She said they have always pronounced the “k”. After making the pastry cookie, I started to do a bit of research to find out more. Everywhere I searched came up with nothing.
Then one day, I decided to ask about them in a German recipes group hoping someone would know what this recipe was. People kept saying it is Kiffles. Then I posted the recipe ingredients, and a wonderful lady posted a newspaper clipping with a recipe for Kieffles. It was the same recipe I made! Eureka they are called Kieffles.
However, it seems that this might be spelled a few different ways as well. Kniffles, Keiffles or Kiffles or Kiffli. Either way, here is a recipe for a delightful delicate pastry cookie.
Determining the Cookie Shape
Without knowing how the cookie is supposed to look, I cut out 4-inch squares, added the applesauce filling and folded over one corner to the other. Baked them and iced them. What I made was more of a turnover pastry. I see now that was not quite right.
Since doing a bit of research, I have found out that Kieffle is cut into a small square with two ends rolled toward the center. With that said, the recipe that was posted on that German recipe group explained a crescent shape. Therefore, I am posting information on both forms.
Cookie Recipe Variation
Please note that recipes such as this can have many variations based on the region you live or the family you grew up in. People also change recipes based on personal tastes and access to ingredients available. I do not profess to be the expert on this subject; however, I have provided you with a good cookie recipe that I have made.
Delicate Fruit Filled Cookie
Either way, they are a delicate cookie that can be filled with various fruit fillings. Try a few to find your favorite such as apricot, cherry, apple, or nut fillings such as pecan, almond, or poppyseed.
Kieffles Cookies Recipe Tips and Options
Use a thick fruit filling. If the fruit filling it too thin, it will run out of the cookie. A great option is the Solo Brand Cake & Pastry Filling.
Divide the dough into 3 balls, cover, and chill for 3 hours before rolling out.
Arrange the cookies approximately 1-inch apart on parchment paper.
Bake until barely golden brown. Remove and let cook on baking sheet for 1-2 minutes, then carefully remove to cooling racks and allow to completely cool.
Use cream cheese or small cheese curds. I have used both now successfully in this recipe.
Two Methods of Rolling out Dough and Filling for the Kieffles Cookies
I could be completely wrong; however, through my research and reading through various recipes, it seems that the cookie share can be made two different ways. Both beautiful.
First method using squares with two edges folded over
Roll out the dough and measure. Try and roll the dough into a rectangle about 1/8-inch-thick square.
Use a pastry wheel or a sharp knife to cut your dough into 1 ½ -inch small squares.
Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper place the squares on the paper.
Place only ½-3/4 teaspoons of filling on each square.
Moisten two opposite corners of the dough with a bit of water, lift the corners over the filling and gently pinch them together.
Second method with a round shape cut into pie wedges
Roll a circle 8-10 inches wide approximately 1/8-inch thick.
Spread the filling on the circle.
Cut into 8 pie-shaped wedges.
Roll up starting with the wide end. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet. Shape into a half moon crescent.
This cookie can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. Store the Kieffles in an airtight container layering the cookies between layers of waxed paper.
When ready to serve, bring the cookies to room temperature and dust with powdered sugar. Or drizzle with icing made from ½ cup of powdered sugar and 2 teaspoons of milk or water.
Kieffles Cookies Recipe
- 2 Cups Flour
- 1 Cup Cottage Cheese or softened cream cheese
- 1 Cup Butter
- 1 Cup Fruit Filling Thick
- 1/2 Cup Nuts (optional) Chopped
- With an electric mixer, whip the butter and cottage cheese until smooth. Then use a pastry cutter to cut in the flour adding 1 cup at a time.
- Use one of the shaping methods mentioned in the blog post and below. Either the rolled crescent cookie or the cut out squares with two sides pulled up making sure to add the fruit filling and optional nuts.
- Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake in an oven that has been preheated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes.
- Bake until barely golden brown. Remove and let cook on baking sheet for 1-2 minutes, then carefully remove to cooling racks and allow to completely cool.
- When ready to serve, bring the cookies to room temperature and dust with powdered sugar. Or drizzle with icing made from ½ cup of powdered sugar and 2 teaspoons of milk or water.
Rolled Crescent Shape Cookie
- Roll a circle 8-10 inches wide approximately1/8-inch thick.Spread the filling on the circle.Cut into 8 pie-shaped wedges. Roll up starting with the wide end. Place on parchment lined cookie sheet. Shape into a half moon crescent.
Square Cookie with Two Sides Pulled Up
- Roll out the dough and measure. Try and roll the dough into a rectangle about 1/8-inch-thick square. Use a pastry wheel or a sharp knife to cut your dough into 1 ½ -inch small squares.Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper place the squares on the paper.Place only ½-3/4 teaspoons of filling on each square.Moisten two opposite corners of the dough with a bit of water, lift the corners over the filling and gently pinch them together.
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I hope that you liked this recipe. If you are looking for more ideas on what to make, here are a few other recipes that you may enjoy.
You can find Victoria crocheting, quilting, and creating recipes. She has worked in restaurants for many years. Her many crochet patterns and quilt patterns are enjoyed by many. In her professional career, she has worked in management in a wide variety of businesses including higher education as a dean of a division. All the while attending college part-time to achieve her doctorate in higher education with an emphasis in e-learning.