These Greek Christmas Honey cookies are super quick to bake, so much fun to make with the kids and highly addictive! Melomakarona (μελομακάρονα) means "sweet blessings" and are perfect to share with friends and family any time of the year.
Greaseproof paper or baking sheet
¾cup(150g) Fine Semolina
4½cups(550g) Plain Flour (soft)
½cup(100g) Orange Juice
3tbspCognac or Brandyoptional
½cup(100g) Sugar Raw Sugar is best
6tbsp(90g) Watermore or less as required
½cup(125g) Olive oil
½cup(125g) Vegetable oil Coconut oil works best
3tbsp(50g) HoneyMarri, Jarrah or Eucalyptus works best
2Zest of two Oranges
½Orange cut into pieces
½cup(180g) HoneyMarri, Jarrah or Eucalyptus works best
1cup(200g) Chopped Walnuts
Powdered Cinnamon optional
Powdered Clove optional
Start by making the syrup first. In a pot add all the ingredients for the syrup, besides the honey and bring to the boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes, until the sugar has dissolved and remove from the stove. Allow to cool to below 40° C and then stir in the honey and set aside to cool completely.While the Syrup is cooling you can start the cookie mix.
In one bowl add the Semolina, Flour and Baking Powder and mix with a whisk to combine.
In another large bowl add the Orange Juice, the Cognac, the Sugar and Spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, vanilla) and mix. Add the Baking Soda and whisk for 5-10 seconds until the ingredients combine and the baking soda dissolves and starts to foam. Pour in the bowl the Water, the Oil, the Orange zest and Honey and whisk to combine.
Combine the two mixtures. Add the mixed flour, semolina and baking powder in the bowl with the rest of the ingredients and start kneading the dough. Knead the dough using your hands, until the ingredients combine and the dough is smooth and soft and slightly sticky. Be careful not to overwork the dough as the cookies will become tough if over kneaded. Allow the dough to rest in the fridge until ready shape.
Preheat the oven to 180C. Layer the bottom of 4 large baking trays with parchment paper and start shaping the cookies. Pinch a portion of dough about the size of a walnut/ 30g (or bigger, if you prefer) and shape with your palms into a smooth oblong shape, like as mall egg. Place onto the baking tray, push lightly the top with a fork and pierce three times on top about half way through the dough.
Place the baking tray in the oven and bake for approx. 15 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly browned and cooked through. If you have made them bigger you will need to extend the time.
When the cookies come out of the oven, dip them immediately in the cold syrup, flipping them with a slotted spoon to absorb the syrup for approx. 10-20 seconds each. Remove the cookies using a slotted spoon, place on a platter and sprinkle with chopped walnuts and spices.
Store the the cookies at room temperature in an airtight container. But remember they wont last long once the kids get their hands on them.