(Russian Cheese Rounds)


Kaletzin are cheese-filled pastries made by Russian Jews. Many prepared these pastries only once a year for the meal following Yom Kippur. They are also ideal for Shavuot.


Russian Cheese Rounds (Kaletzin)

12 pastries


  • 1 package (2-1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast or 1 (0.6-ounce) cake fresh yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water (105 degrees F to 115 degrees F for dry yeast;
         80 degrees F to 85 degrees F for fresh yeast)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup warm milk, or 3/4 cup warm water and 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter or shortening, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon table salt or 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • About 4 cups (20 ounces) bread or unbleached all-purpose flour


  • 2 pounds (4 cups) pot or farmer cheese
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

1. To make the dough: Dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup water. Stir in 1 teaspoon sugar and let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. In a large bowl, combine the yeast mixture, milk, remaining sugar, butter, eggs, and salt. Blend in 1-1/2 cups flour. Gradually add enough of the remaining flour to make a mixture that holds together.

2. On a lightly floured surface or in an electric mixer with a dough hook, knead the dough, adding more flour as needed, until smooth and springy, about 5 minutes. Place in an oiled bowl and turn to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk, 2 to 3 hours, or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

3. Punch down the dough, knead briefly, divide into 24 equal pieces, form into balls, and let stand for 10 minutes.

4. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly grease the sheet.

5. Roll each dough piece into a 2-inch round about 1/4 inch thick.

6. To make the filling: Place a spoonful of pot cheese and several dots of butter in the center of half the rounds.

7. Top with the remaining 12 rounds and press the edges to seal. Prick the tops with the tines of a fork.

8. Place the dough rounds on the prepared baking sheet, leaving 1-1/2 inches between each pastry. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pastries to a wire rack and let cool completely.

  • from:
    Encyclopedia of Jewish Food
  • by Gil Marks
  • Wiley 2010
  • Hardcover; 672 pages; $40
  • ISBN-10: 0470391308
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-470-39130-3
  • Reprinted by permission.

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