Growing up in Texas, kolaches were a big deal. Grandma made them for special occasions. And there were some bakeries here and there that we'd stop at to get some. It was high praise for a bakery if my dad declared, "those are some gooooood kolaches!"
So, while recently flipping through the Homesick Texan cookbook, I stumbled on a recipe for kolaches. They looked just like I'd remembered. So I had to try making them myself.
While I remember them being made with prune filling, I opted to buy premade cans of apricot and raspberry. I wasn't so sure about mixing preschoolers with prunes...
And here's the result.
I used bread flour, as I'd somehow run out of all-purpose flour, so they ended up being huge! They were at least twice as wide as I remembered them. But they were good. They're more doughy than sweet, although the filling is quite sweet. They're best when fresh, so I distributed them among friends to avoid eating 12 tablespoons of butter in 2 days. But I'll be making them again soon.
We're still trying to figure out what our family traditions will be around the holidays. So far, they consist of getting together with friends at Thanksgiving and me working the day after Thanksgiving while BestestHusband and the girls start to decorate for Christmas. But I feel like kolaches should be one of our traditions. It's a part of Texas German-Czech heritage that is so easily lost living in Boston. And a memory I want my girls to have.
And now that I can make them, I feel like I have a certain mom cred. Hard to explain, but... Growing up, there were always a few ladies at the church who would bring things to potluck dinners and their food would disappear first. Mrs. Smith was known for her chicken'n'dumplins, Mrs. Jones was known for her sausage, Mrs. Brown would make tamales, etc. You wanted to get in line early to make sure you actually got some. I've always wanted to have The Thing that I could make. It's like church-lady street cred. And I feel like maybe I have it now. Maybe...