Christmas is undeniably the most wonderful time of the year! It might become even better with Greek Christmas sweets: Melomakarona and Kourabiedes.
Melomakarona will fill your house with aromas of orange, honey, cinnamon, and cloves… Each bite is so deliciously Christmassy…it will become an instant personal favorite!
Kourabiedes can be characterized as almond snow balls which melt in your mouth. Sweet and crumbly, with crunchy toasted almonds and they look so Christmassy!!
Below you may find the recipes for both of the aforementioned sweets. Enjoy!
For the syrup:
- 500 g water
- 800 g granulated sugar
- 150 g honey
- 3 stick(s) cinnamon
- 3 cloves 1 orange, cut in half
- Boil all of the ingredients for the syrup, apart from honey, until sugar melts. Remove from heat. Add the honey and mix till combined.
- Let syrup cool for 3-4 hours. It must be cold by the time the cookies come out from the oven.
- You can prepare the syrup the day before…
For the cookies:
- 400 g orange juice
- 400 g seed oil
- 180 g olive oil
- 50 g icing sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon(s) cloves
- 2-3 teaspoon(s) cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon(s) nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon(s) baking soda
- zest, of 2 oranges
- 1 kilo all-purpose flour
- 200 g semolina, fine
- Preheat the oven to 190* C (370*F) Fan.
- To make the cookies, you need to prepare 2 separate mixtures.
- For the first mixture, add all of the ingredients in a large bowl. Mix, using a hand whisk.
- In a separate bowl, add all of the ingredients for the second mixture.
- Combine the first and second mixture.
- Mix by hand, very gently and for a very short time (10 seconds at the most). If you mix longer the mixture will split or curdle.
- Mold cookie dough into oval shapes, 3-4 cm in length, 30 g each. Try to keep them as similar as possible.
- Bake for about 20-25 minutes, until they are crunchy and dark golden brown.
- As soon as you remove them from the oven, soak the hot cookies in the syrup for 10 seconds.
- Allow them to drain on a wire rack.
- Drizzle with honey and chopped walnuts.
EXTRA TIP: Be careful not to overwork the cookie dough because the oil may start to seep out and then they won’t turn out crispy! The orange used for the syrup should a whole fresh orange, cut in half!
Watch the video: https://youtu.be/9USSwLV5WDg
- 900 g all-purpose flour
- 500 g butter, sheep butter
- 220 g icing sugar
- 2 stick(s) vanilla powder
- 1 teaspoon(s) bitter almond liqueur
- 200 g almond slivers, blanched slivered, toasted
- 1 teaspoon(s) rosewater
- 300 g icing sugar
- 1 tablespoon(s) rosewater
- Remove the butter from the refrigerator about 2-3 hours before using, so that it can soften at room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 180* C (350*F) Fan.
- In the mixer using the whisk attachment, beat the butter for 5-6 minutes on high speed until it turns white. Add the icing sugar and vanilla. Continue beating for another 5-7 minutes. As soon as the sugar is added, the volume of the butter may lessen but it will rise again. It will be ready when it looks like whipped cream.
- Remove the mixing bowl and add the flour in batches. Gently fold in with a spatula and add then add the almonds.
- The mixture should be soft but not that soft that it will stick to your hands.
- Mold into balls the size of walnuts (25 g). Place them in rows, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Make a small indentation on top of every little ball of dough with your finger. This way it will it can hold on to more icing sugar.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until they turn light golden.
- Remove from oven. Carefully move them from the baking sheet and place them on to a wire rack to cool. They are very soft and crumbly when hot.
- When cool, spray them with some rose water.
- Put some icing sugar in a sieve and dust.
Watch the video: https://youtu.be/Ena5L-3WvrM