Capturing Greek Christmas Magic: The Heartwarming Tale of Kourabiedes

 What is Christmas without the heavenly delight of kourabiedes? A Christmas table remains incomplete without these cherished festive buttery confections. Kourabiedes, sometimes spelled as kourabiethes, are as white as the winter snow, cloaked in a blanket of powdered sugar. But what lies behind the history of this cherished, homemade Christmas treat? Its name traces its origins to the Persian word "Qurabiye," signifying a delightful, dry cookie that has stood the test of time. This authentic kourabiedes recipe weaves a tapestry of flavors with just seven essential ingredients. In your culinary journey, you'll require the rich embrace of butter, the satisfying crunch of almonds, the snowy sweetness of powdered sugar, the reliable backbone of flour, the leavening magic of baking soda, a subtle hint of brandy, and the fragrant allure of rose water. Among these, rose water is a treasure that graces many Greek desserts with its delicate aroma and flavor, elevating each recipe to a realm of heightened sweetness. Seek this precious ingredient in any Greek food store, ensuring it is intended for culinary use, not to be confused with skincare products! In times past, Greeks crafted kourabiethes with two unique ingredients: baker's ammonia and alisiva, known as ash water. While modern recipes have evolved to exclude these elements, the legacy endures. Many Greek bakers still hold fast to the belief that alisiva is the secret to crafting the perfect kourabiedes, carrying forward a tradition that has spanned generations. Last but far from least, when embarking on your kourabiedes odyssey, the quality of unsalted butter reigns supreme. Allow this buttery muse to bask in room temperature glory before commencing your masterpiece. A cup in this recipe refers to a voluminous 250 ml, ensuring precision in your culinary endeavors. Here's a vital tip for your journey: Prior to introducing the flour, dedicate your attention to whipping the butter with care. As you incorporate the flour, proceed with caution, for the dough should retain its delightful stickiness. Gradually add the flour while maintaining a tactile connection with the dough, ensuring it never dries out, preserving its malleability for shaping. This delightful kourabiedes recipe yields approximately 36 pieces, each a token of tradition, love, and the festive spirit of Christmas. Cherish the moments as you craft these delectable delights, for they are not just cookies; they are a piece of heartwarming tradition that makes every Christmas truly special.


Kourabiedes - Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound of unsalted butter
  • 1 cup of finely ground almonds, peeled
  • 3/4 cup of powdered sugar, plus about 2 cups for rolling
  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons of brandy
  • Rosewater

How to Make Kourabiedes

  1. Take a pan and cover it with a baking sheet. Spread the almonds on the baking sheet and place them under the broiler for about 5 minutes until they get a nice light brown color. Allow them to cool and then grind them.
  2. Preheat the oven to 325°F (around 160°C).
  3. Put the butter in the mixer bowl with the 3/4 cup sugar, set it on high, and mix it until you get a fluffy and light mixture.
  4. Take a bowl and add the flour and baking soda.
  5. Add the ground almonds to the butter mixture and continue mixing.
  6. Add the brandy and beat more.
  7. Replace the wire whip of the mixer with the dough hook and gradually add 2 cups of the flour to the butter mixture. Remove the bowl from the machine.
  8. Pinch a bit of dough, roll it between your fingers, and then mold it into an oval or crescent shape. Do this with all of the dough.
  9. Place on parchment paper on a cookie sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes.
  10. While kourabiedes are baking, sift powdered sugar into a large pan with sides.
  11. Place a layer of the hot kourabiedes on this sugar and sprinkle with rosewater.
  12. Sift powdered sugar liberally over them.
  13. Repeat with the next layer. Let them cool.
  14. Then take each cookie and roll it in more sugar and place it in a tin with a cover.
If you like this recipe, you should try this skaltsounia recipe. Merry Christmas!