Olive Oil Nut-and-Spice Cookies / Melomakarona me Elaiolado
These cookies are a Greek Christmas specialty, but they are great with your morning coffee every day of the year, too.
- For the Syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup honey
- ½ cup/120 ml water
- 1 medium cinnamon stick
- One-inch/2.5-cm-wide strip lemon zest
- For the Cookies
- 3-3 ½ cups all-purpose flour as needed
- 1 scant tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp. ground cloves
- 1 cup/240 ml extra-virgin Greek olive oil
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ½ cup/120 ml fresh orange or lemon juice
- ¼ cup/60 ml brandy
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- Grated zest of 1 orange
1. Make the syrup: Bring the sugar, honey, and water to a boil in a medium-size saucepan. Add the cinnamon and lemon zest and simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes. Let cool completely.
2. For the cookies: Sift together 3 cups of the flour, the baking powder, cinnamon, and cloves in a small bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, beat the olive oil with the sugar until creamy. Stir the baking soda into the citrus juice and add to the oil-and-sugar mixture. Add the brandy, walnuts, and grated zest and continue mixing vigorously until combined.