8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 pound unsalted butter at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus 9 Tbsps. (divided)
1/4 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
3/4 cup raisins (optional)
1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup apricot preserves, pureed in a food processor
1 egg beaten with 1 Tbsp. milk (for egg wash)
Cream the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light. Add 1/4 cup granulated sugar, the salt, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour and mix until just combined. Dump the dough out onto a well-floured board (or counter top) and roll it into a ball. Cut the ball in quarters, wrap each piece in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for one hour.
To make the filling, combine 6 tablespoons of granulated sugar, the brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, the raisins, and walnuts in a small bowl.
On a well-floured board (or counter top), roll each ball of dough into a 9-inch circle. Spread the dough with 2 tablespoons pureed apricot preserves and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the filling. Press the filling lightly into the dough. Cut the circle into 12 equal wedges - cut the whole circle in quarters, then each quarter into thirds. Starting with the wide edge, roll up each wedge. Place the cookies, points tucked under, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (or Silpat). Chill for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Brush each cookie with the egg wash. Combine 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon and sprinkle on the cookies. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove to wire rack and let cool.
Note: Make the whole recipe and freeze them unbaked. Defrost completely before baking. Also delicious with raspberry jam instead of apricot preserves.
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa Parties! cookbook.