Kourambiedes, the Greek Christmas shortbread cookies

Kourambiedes, Greek Christmas Cookies: My family recipe

My Family Recipe for Kourambiedes, Greek Christmas Cookies
Serves 50
My sister Koko, short for Konstantina, makes these delicious, traditional Greek Christmas shortbread cookies every year and this is her recipes. Share them with friends and family and give them as gifts. Try a Greek dessert wine, such as the sweet wine of Monemvassia, with all your holiday sweets.
  1. 8 oz./ 228 g blanched almonds
  2. 16 oz. / 500 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  3. 2 large egg yolks
  4. 15 oz. / 440 g Confectioner’s sugar
  5. 1 tsp. baking powder
  6. 75 ml Cognac/Brandy
  7. 8 – 9 oz./ 225-275 g all-purpose flour, sifted
  1. Lightly toast almonds then ground to the consistency of coarse bulgur wheat.
  2. Whip the butter, egg yolks, 1 oz./ 28 gr. confectioner’s sugar and b. powder at high speed until very creamy and smooth, about 8-9 minutes. This is the secret to this recipe. Add almonds and brandy and beat another 4-5 minutes.
  3. Add the sifted flour in increments, starting with 175 gr. / 6 oz. (approx. 1 cup) then adding the remainder in 2 ½ tablespoon (50 g/ 1/7 g) increments, as needed, until the dough is smooth and silky and no longer sticks.
  4. Shape into traditional kourambie shapes. Bake on ungreased sheets for 10-12 minutes at 340F / 170 C. These cookies should not brown. They should bake to a pale beige-golden color. Remove and cool slightly.
  5. Sift remaining confectioner’s sugar over the cookies.
  1. You can shape kourambiedes all sorts of ways: As little buttons, about 1 ½ in. / 4 cm in diameter; small oblong fingers, about 2 in./ 5 cm long; or as hearts, diamonds, or crescents.
Greek Food - Greek Cooking - Greek Recipes by Diane Kochilas //www.dianekochilas.com/

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  1. Harriet blake says:

    Just made my yiayia’s recipe! But will try this one too!

    • Diane Kochilas says:


  2. Lorna says:

    I love these little cookies, but I thought that in Ikaria they were traditionally made with a whole clove stuck into the top. (Or so my Ikarian husband says, but maybe he just likes cloves)

    • Diane Kochilas says:

      They are, indeed, stuck with a clove on Ikaria. This is my sister’s recipe, which she learned from her mother-in-law, who was from the Peloponnese!

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