Thursday, March 10, 2011

Koulourakia

Koulourakia, also known as Greek Easter cookies are buttery pastry that are traditionally hand-shaped into braided circles, hairpin twists, figure eights, twisted wreaths, horseshoes or Greek letters. They have a mild sweet flavor with a hint of vanilla and a beautiful golden colour egg glaze on their top.

Knowing that I'm not a Greek, you might ask..."Why are you baking Koulourakia?"

It all started on one typical morning tea when our half-Greek colleague shared her traditional Koulourakia recipe with everyone. Interestingly, every Greek family has their own different version of Koulourakia. In Australia, most Greek families celebrate their Easter day with their extended community with a large variety of Koulourakia, all in different shapes and flavours. My colleague's recipe uses orange juice and melted butter for her cookies but I prefer the creaming method and so I've decided to use this recipe by Taste.com.

I made these cookies for a Sunday morning tea with my friend and her family and everyone including our kids loves these cookies.

The cookies without the icing sugar..
check out the texture of the cookies...delicious!
Here's the recipe from Taste.com with my slight modifications in blue.

Makes 28

200g butter
1 cup caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tbs each of orange and lemon rind (I didn't add this)
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup milk
2 1/4 cups plain flour
3/4 cup self-raising flour
1 egg yolk
icing sugar to serve

Preheat oven 180°C. Beat 200g butter and 1 cup caster sugar until creamy. Add 1 tsp vanilla essence and 1 tbs each of orange and lemon rind. Beat in 3 egg yolks. Beat in 1/4 cup milk, 2 1/4 cups plain flour and 3/4 cup self-raising flour. Bring together on a lightly floured surface. Roll 1 tablespoon of the mixture into a 20cm log. Fold in half, pinch ends together and twist 2 times. Repeat. (I shaped it into "S" shapes too.) Place on a baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Whisk 1 egg yolk with 1 tbs water. Brush over the cookies. Bake 20-22 minutes or until golden. Cool completely. Dust with icing sugar to serve.

I made 43 cookies with this recipe and bake them at 180°C fan forced for 10-15 min.

Happy Baking

29 comments:

  1. Very lovely & cute cookies ;)

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  2. These cookies are SO beautiful, and I REALLY want to make them! I KNOW they must taste fabulous. I love all the different shapes:)

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  3. Reminds me a little of doughnuts with powdered sugar. These look really tasty! Would love to have one of those twists with my tea.

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  4. Looks yummy, good with plain hot tea. First time hearing of these Greek pastries, so kind of you to share! Have a great day!

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  5. Zoe these are new fpr me but I love hem are really cute and look delicious! gloria

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  6. These are so pretty! I love the shapes and the insides look so scrumptious! I can see why everyone loved them.

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  7. I've never heard of these cookies before, but just by the simple fact that your description is "buttery pastry cookie," I'm SO loving this recipe! These sound wonderful, and given their Easter tradition, they remind me that Spring is ALMOST here :)

    Hope you're having a great week!

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  8. wow they are too pretty, especially those in the braids. looks like a whole lot of buttery goodness!

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  9. These cookies look perfect with a cup of tea...
    They have come out really well...

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  10. Wow those cookies looks simply fabulous,love those braids..

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  11. They looks and texture are more like donuts than cookies to me. Lovely!

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  12. They look perfect. I just know mine would end up looking like misshapen lumps.:)

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  13. these look so so so good! i love the 2nd photo the best :)

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  14. oh these do sound perfect to enjoy on a weekend morning!

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  15. Whoah~ gorgeous!!
    wish that i can have some~!

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  16. great for introducing these to us! i wish i ahve half of your rolling skills, the shapes are so beautiful!

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  17. This is a new one for me! Looks great. Now I know that Koulourakia is a Greek Easter cookie, how very interesting. The texture is just fabulous! Thank you for sharing. Have a lovely weekend!

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  18. Thanks for this interesting lesson. This is new to me. Thanks for sharing Zoe.

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  19. ah the texture is divinely delicious!

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  20. Yum! I've never heard of these before, but now I'm very interested in making them.

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  21. Your koulourakia look delicious Zoe! It is true that every family during Easter makes koulourakia Smirneika as they are called.

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  22. I am unfamiliar with koulourakia ! From appearance, it looks like croissant donut-style! But maybe donut croissant -style :p

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  23. they look beautiful..more like bread than cookies tho! they look so festive too!

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  24. I love finding unique recipes like this! They are beautiful and golden looking. Thanks for sharing

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  25. I love these cookies! They're so good with a cup of coffee- I must make them soon. :)

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  26. Zoe, these cookies look very lovely and sound delightful!
    Happy Monday!
    xx,
    Tammy

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