Breaking all the rules for savory walnut pesto rugalach

Walnut Pesto Rugelach Walking away from the car I happened to look up at the apartments surrounding The Domain. Somewhere near the top I spied a splash of color in a window surrounded by white and beige on all sides. I might have gasped, gape mouthed before uttering, “colored curtains…here…” Colored curtains are typically against the rules in Austin apartments. Maybe everywhere. I’ve seen a section in the standard Texas lease about how all curtains must show white through the windows. Because when everything is beige and boring and the same then the world is perfect and safe.

If there was any place where I was sure that all the rules would be followed by everyone and enforced should anyone step over the line it would be a place like the uber shopping mall, The Domain. Think of the movie Pleasantville before the city goes technicolor. That drape of color — it’s after, it’s difference, a kiss, love, hate, anger, knowledge, laughter, trust, faith, passion, grief, depression, hurt and pain and joy.

That’s the world I would rather have. There is more responsibility in breaking the rules. Like walking on the grass and allowing your dog off leash, jaywalking and remembering this is ours not mine and yours. You have to think in consideration of others. You have to trust others. You have to think about your actions and the actions of others. You have to think in equal terms.

Say when you go to the free hillside movie and see the sign indicating the area where it is okay to set up a chair, but realizing that doing so will block the view of the people sitting on the ground behind you. So you decide to ignore this particular rule and fold up your chair because you realize that sometimes rules don’t have to be followed. Heh-hem.

I have been wanting to make these savory cookies and most of the recipes from Savory Baking: Warm and Inspiring Recipes for Crisp, Crumbly Flaky Pastries by Mary Cech for quite some time. It’s a hard cookbook to find outside of the library. Don’t be put off by the sedate title. The inside is nicely original. Although, considering how expensive used copies have gotten I’d guess few are put off by the title.

Since my only memorable experience with rugalach is as a Christmas cookie filling it with basil walnut pesto feels like breaking the rules. Sometimes you have to find your rebellion. Mine did not roll into the little half moons the directions say because I didn’t cut the round properly and there was no going back. That’s the thing with breaking the rules and getting away with it–you have to be confident.





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