When you take a bite out of Zadies soft dough hamantaschen, you’re not only transported back to the court of Achashverosh, but to Eastern Europe as well. The soft dough hamantaschen, exclusive to Zadies Bakeshop in Fair Lawn, is an Eastern European tradition, hundreds of years old. “The Eastern Europeans in the neighborhood know when we start making it, and come out of the woodwork for it,” said owner Adam Steinberg. “Poppy soft dough hamantaschen sell like you wouldn’t believe.”
Adam Steinberg and his brother Josh are third- or fourth-generation bakers who opened Zadies in 2005. Adam didn’t know, until he began researching, that his family’s recipe for soft dough hamantaschen had such a long history. As far as he knows, no one else in the area makes hamantaschen the same way. “We really like to put our own stamp on things, especially at the holidays,” he said. “We’ve been making soft dough hamentashen quite a while now and have really perfected and honed in on the recipe. It’s really great to carry on the traditions of my family and our Jewish ancestry.” Adam said the softness comes from making hamantaschen with a yeast dough.
Zadies makes both soft and standard cookie dough versions of hamantaschen. Only the soft variety has Zadies’ special blueberry filling. Both kinds are being made with apple, prune, chocolate and poppy filling. The cookie dough hamantaschen is also being made with apricot filling.
Soft dough hamantaschen can’t be purchased elsewhere, like other Zadies pastries, cakes, cookies and challah. Steinberg says many people come in for the hamantaschen and then discover other treats they didn’t know the bakery makes.
Since reopening during the pandemic, Zadies offers both curbside pickup, with 24-hour notice, and socially distanced indoor capacity. “We never let more than three or four people in the store at one time,” Adam said. During primetime periods, people will line up outside with proper distancing and masks. Adam is grateful that the community has continued to support them and given such positive reviews and feedback during this difficult time.
By Bracha Schwartz