Two month ago I got a message on couchsurfing from an American woman who told me that she is in love with my blog! Thanks again, Charley! 😉 She said, she knew the perfect Greek cooking teacher for my challenge. She surfed her couch once and told me to ask her if she would cook with me via Skype. And she did! 🙂
The woman I´m talking about is named Katerina – a very familar name for me – but that´s not the only thing we have in common. She´s vegan as well and she also has and loves cats. So we had many things to talk about while cooking.
Our “skype-date” was devided into two parts. As it´s Christmas time we decided to make the most famous Greek Christmas cookies which are called Melomakarona. They are soooo delicious – my whole family fell in love with them on Christmas. You have to try them! It´s worth it and they are easier to make as it seems. 🙂
Μελομακάρονα / Melomakarona
- 900 g flour
- 1 cup orange juice
- 2 teaspoons baking Soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 – 2 cup(s) sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons cloves, grounded
- 1 cup grand manier or contreau or any similar liqueur, cognac, brandy etc.
- 2 – 3 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
- 4 cups olive oil
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 cups agave nectar/syrup or maple syrup (I used agave)
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 5-6 cloves
- about 600 g walnuts, roughly grounded
Mix the Soda in the orange juice. Add all the other ingredients (one at a time) and mix well. Work the dough with your hands. You will get a soft, slightly wet dough. That´s how it should be.
Pinch a small portion of dough. Shape in your palms into a smooth oblong shape, like you see in the picture.
Place the cookies on trays covered with baking sheets about 2 cm apart. Bake by 180 degrees Celsius for about 30 minutes. They have to be light brown.
Let them cool down.
When the cookies are cold you can prepare the syrup. Mix all ingredients except the walnuts in a small pot and bring to a boil, stirring. Reduce heat and let it cook for another 5 minutes.
Place the cookies into the syrup. Let them sit for 2-3 minutes. Turn them and let sit for another 2-3 minutes.
Cover the bottem of a bowl with grounded walnuts. Take the cookies out of the syrup pot and place them into that bowl. Sprinkle generously with grounded walnuts. Repeat with all the other cookies.
Let them dry on baking paper.