There's a little indie coffee shop in downtown Denver that has gorgeous looking pastries. I almost never buy one, but one day I bought a rugelach. Theirs was giant, dry, and sad - but with just enough pastry/filling flavor to hint that rugelach should be something much yummier.
And once I started looking for recipes, I realized this was something that my dad's mom would make as a Christmas cookie, and I was even more excited to make my own recipe. Her recipe, and many traditional ones, feature a sweet walnut filling, but I'm not that into walnuts and it sounded like more work, so I just use jam. Raspberry jam and orange marmalade are my standard choices.
Here's what I put together by looking at several recipes and keeping the less fiddly bits.
1 c butter
8 oz cream cheese
1/3 c sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 c flour
(I added a splash of water to mine this year because the texture looked off. It seemed to work.)
cream together everything but the flour, then added the flour and mix thoroughly. Add a tiny bit of cold water if it's not coming together.
Divide it into four parts, shape them as discs, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours.
Once they're chilled, roll it out to about 1/4 inch thick, cut wedges (pizza cutter!) add a dollop of jam to the wide end and roll them up. The jam ALWAYS leaks out, so I've been putting down foil and greasing that. I need to try parchment paper sometime.
Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Let sit on the pan for a few minutes and then remove while they're still warm and before the jam leakage glues them to the foil forever.
You can do it one disc at a time, saving the rest in the fridge for... awhile. I think I had one dry out and get funky on me once, but it was there for probably a month.