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Melomakarona are Greek spicy Christmas olive oil and flour – semolina cookies drenched in a honey syrup and sprinkled with walnuts on top.
I used the basic recipe to make these cookies, which I filled with chocolate. I then dipped one side in melted chocolate and coated some with roasted pistachios and the other in chocolate shavings.
For “nistisima” (Lenten) melomakarona, use only couverture chocolate.
It’s been very hectic the past days with so many things to do that I hardly find time to post or visit my favourite blogs.
I am going to make a quick post because I want to thank all of my readers which have reached Kopiaste to over 1.000 hits a day.
I decided to make a recipe of my own, without of course changing the whole taste and texture of this delicious, honey bathed cookie.
I used all the main ingredients of memomakarona which is olive oil, sugar flour and semolina but there is something different in the flavour and in the filling.
As you may see from the picture I have shaped the melomakarona different than the traditional way and I did not use a box grater but I used “something else” this year, something we probably all have in our kitchens: an egg cutter!
Melomakarona are not filled cookies (and if they are they are probably filled with walnuts) but I decided to fill it with “chocolate” an ingredient which Greeks would not expect when eating melomakarona.
After bathing the melomakarona in the honey syrup I used a special flavoured chocolate and dipped the melomakarona in and then I covered half of them with a different type of chocolate shavings and the other half with pistachios.
I am not going to reveal the “secret ingredients” but if you would like to win a professional pair of Kitchen Scissors, with which you can cut herbs, meat, paper packages, parchment paper, it can even cut the bones of a chicken, here is what you have to do.
You have five ways to win. Choose whichever suits you best.If you choose all five you will have to leave a separate comment for each entry so that you have five different numbers. The winner will be selected from Random.org.
1. Leave a comment telling me what you think about the melomakarona.
2. Leave a comment guessing one of the four underlined secret ingredients.
3. Twitter it and tell me you did – make sure to leave your twitter user name.
4. Leave me a message on the post on Facebook and tell me you did.
5. Blog about it in one of your posts and provide the link in the comment.
The giveaway is not only for bloggers but it is for all my readers (including the Greek blog) who will have to provide a valid address if they win. (No P.O. boxes please) and I will ship it anywhere you are.
The comments of the Greek blog will count after the comments here e.g., if there are 20 comments here and 5 on the Greek blog, they will count as numbers 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25. The winner will be announced on Thursday the 24th December.
This and many more recipes are included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste!
The winner will be announced on the post for Loukoumia tou Gamou (24/12).
- 1½ cups (250 grams – 8.80 oz) good quality light olive oil
- 1 cup (230 grams – 8.10 oz) sugar
- 1 cup (250 grams – 8.80 oz) fresh orange juice
- 30 ml orange liqueur
- About 7 cups (850 grams - 1.90 lbs) all-purpose flour
- 1 cup (180 grams – 6.40 oz) fine semolina
- 1 tbsp baking soda
- 1 – 2 tbsp orange zest (from 1 orange, only a thin layer)
- ½ tsp cloves, powdered
- ½ tsp cinnamon, powdered
For the syrup:
- 400 grams (14.10 oz) sugar, (almost 2 cups)
- 500 grams (1.10 lbs) thyme honey
- 2 cups water
- 1 shot of orange liqueur
- 1 orange peel
- 1 piece of whole cinnamon
- 3 – 4 cloves
Filling and coating:
- 3 couverture chocolates x 125 grams (4.40 oz) each, cut into 2 x 2 cm pieces
- 1 Cadburys milk chocolate (cappuccino flavoured with coffee crisps) (100 grams – 3.5 oz) or any other flavour you like
- ½ cup couverture chocolate shavings
- 85 grams (3 oz) roasted pistachios, coarsely pounded
- Start by preparing the syrup. Add sugar, honey, water, cinnamon stick, cloves, orange peel and liqueur in a pot. Bring to a boil. It will soon bubble and form froth. Skim and reduce heat and simmer for 8 - 10 minutes mixing now and then. Remove from the heat.
- Sieve the flour and mix with semolina, orange zest, cloves and cinnamon.
- Beat the olive oil and sugar well for about 10 minutes on high speed. Mix the baking soda in the orange juice and add to the sugar (be careful as it will bubble), as well as the orange liqueur.
- Change to the K paddle and mix the semolina mixture gradually until the dough does not stick on the hands. (If your mixer does not have a K paddle, use your hands).
- Preheat oven to 180o C / 350o F, and while preheating the oven, roast the pistachios.
- Line a baking tin with parchment paper and taking some dough the size of a large walnut, shape melomakarona round and then slightly flatten it. Add 1 piece of chocolate (about 2 x 2 cm – 0.78 x 0.78 inches) and fold again into a round or oblong shape, to enclose the chocolate. Press the cookie on a box grater or an egg cutter horizontally and vertically, to form a pattern on top.
- Place on the baking tin and bake for 30 minutes, or until they become lightly golden.
- When out of the oven, dip them in the syrup for about 1 - 2 minutes. Turn them over and remove with a slotted ladle in a colander until they cool.
- In a double boiler heat the milk chocolate as well as any remaining couverture chocolate and mix until they melt.
- Dip the tip of each melomakarono in the melted chocolate and then in the pistachios and the remaining half in the chocolate shavings.
There will be some leftover syrup. Place it in a jar and refrigerate.
Use it in other recipes needing syrup. (See Pischies, Baklavas, Loukoumades, Tsipopita etc.)
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi!
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