Lekvar – aka Plum Butter- is one of my favorite Hamantaschen fillings. Prunes may not seem like the most romantic ingredient, but they are magical in the center of a freshly baked hamantaschen. This filling is slowly cooked with orange juice and zest– it will make your kitchen smell amazing as it simmers. Brown sugar is mixed it at the end of cooking to thicken and sweeten the filling. The sugar adds depth and helps it to hold up better during baking. It also extends the shelf life of the lekvar.
This plum butter has lots of uses– it’s not just for filling hamantaschen. It can be used to fill other cookies and pastries, including pierogi and strudel. Or, serve it as a simple jam on toast or crackers. I like to spread it on a toasted piece of French bread topped with a mild, nutty cheese– the flavor combination is heavenly.
Note: I am always working to improve my recipes and make them better. I have updated this filling with a newer recipe that I feel is tastier and works better for baking. I hope you enjoy the new filling. If for some reason you’d like the old recipe, email me and I will send it to you.
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- Combine all of the ingredients in a saucepan except for the brown sugar. Stir and bring to a boil for one minute.
- Reduce heat to medium low so the mixture simmers slowly and constantly. Cover the pot. Let the mixture simmer covered for 20 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
- Remove the lid from the pan. Let the prunes continue to simmer for 3-5 more minutes, stirring frequently, until most of the liquid has evaporated/absorbed. Keep a close eye on the pan to make sure the prunes don't burn. When there are about 3 tbsp of liquid left in the pan, remove from heat.
- Stir the brown sugar into the prune mixture till brown sugar melts and dissolves.
- Mash the prune mixture with a potato masher till a smooth puree forms. Run a fork through the mixture to break up any pieces the potato masher missed. You can also use an immersion blender for a smoother puree, if you want to.
- Let cool to room temperature before using. Store in a sealed, airtight container in the refrigerator. Refrigerating the filling to chill completely will make it easier to work with when filling hamantaschen.