These sweet, crumbly, so tasty treats are made traditionally at Christmas time in Greece but, truth be told, I love them all year round. It’s so quick and easy to whip up a batch, finikia/melomakarona may just become your go-to Greek cookie!
A few simple ingredients are all you need and they’re all things you probably have in the kitchen right now. Bonus, the dough keeps refrigerated for up to two weeks in case you want to bake a quick panful when friends drop in. The syrup can be made with either honey or agave nectar and is authentically flavored with cinnamon stick and orange peel. Sprinkle with chopped walnuts and try not to eat them all at once!
If you prefer a sweeter cookie, add up to another 1/4 cup of sugar to the recipe here. I like a less sweet cookie because the syrup sweetens the finikia/melomakarona perfectly for my taste.
My father likes a sweeter cookie and sometimes likes to have his finikia/melomakarona syrup-free with coffee for breakfast. Any way you choose to enjoy them, you won’t be disappointed!
*NOTE: This recipe makes three dozen cookies.
- 3 1/2 cups of AP flour
- 1 cup of vegetable oil
- 2/3 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1-2 tsp cinnamon (depending on your preference)
- 1/2 cup honey or agave nectar
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 – 1 1/2 cupwater
- 1/2 cup orange juice (fresh squeezed if possible)
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- Combine dry ingredients in medium bowl. Set aside.
- Combine wet ingredients in large bowl. Dissolve sugar in orange juice then drizzle in vegetable oil while whisking to incorporate well.
- Add dry ingredients to well and mix well until all ingredients are combined and you have a soft dough. Do not over mix or knead as cookie dough will be tough.
- Allow dough to rest for at least 15 minutes. Using a 1/4 cup scoop, divide 1/4 cup scoop of dough into 2 pieces and roll between your hands into a sausage like shape. Lay on pan and press down gently until cookie is a little less than 1/2″ thick and oblong in shape (like the shape of an egg but flat).
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until edges are just golden brown. Remove from pan and dip in syrup.
- While finikia are baking, combine all syrup ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium low heat for approx. 10 minutes stirring occasionally to incorporate. Taste as it’s cooking to see if you prefer a bit more honey/agave or a bit more orange juice. In summer, I like a lighter, more citrussy syrup. In winter, I find myself using more honey and cinnamon and less orange juice. Remove from heat and dip cookies in syrup while both cookies and syrup are still warm.
- Sprinkle with chopped walnuts or pistachios. Kali Orexi!
About the author
Kiki Vagianos is The Greek Vegan! Kiki lives and cooks in Boston. She spends her free time collecting, testing and posting favorite traditional Greek recipes at The Greek Vegan website. She loves sharing these simple and delicious authentic dishes and helping to bring them back into kitchens throughout the Greek diaspora. Kali Orexi!
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