Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Kourabiethes / Greek Shortbread

Can't believe that December the festive month is here again.

For the past 6 years, I have been baking for my son's teachers and friends. And I have been doing this religiously because this is my way of saying "Thank you" for caring my son.

This year, my son is at his final Year 6 at his primary school. Although this will be the last year that I can bake for his teachers and friends, I won't be bake anything for anyone this year due to Covid-19 restrictions. Sad? 
I do feel a little sentimental that I won't be baking for these lovely people anymore but it's time for us to move on. I will be giving boxed chocolate this year... Sad because they are not unique homemade stuff.

Nevertheless, if you are planning to bake something nice and pretty this Christmas, I have a really good tried-and-tested Kourabiethes recipe to share. In fact, these are the Kourabiethes that I baked for my son's school teachers last year but I didn't have a chance to share this recipe earlier.

Kourabiethes or Kourabiedes or Kourampiedes are the Greek version of shortbread that are made with almonds. They are typically coated generously with icing sugar. Maybe due to its white snowy look, these cookies are also known as wedding cookies or Christmas cookies.

Like many traditional foods, there are always many different versions of Kourabiethes. Some are hand-shaped into shapes like crescents or balls. Some are made with egg but some are not. Some contain more almond. Some contains more butter.

This is the easy roll-and-cut eggless version of Kourabiethes and these cookies look so pretty when they are nicely rolled and cut.

When I say that the recipe is easy, I really mean it! Watch my video and you will see that the dough is easy to handle that you don't even need any extra flour for dusting and rolling. However, you might think that the dough can be a little crumbly to handle. Please do not add any liquid into the dough. Just keep kneading because the dough comes together but please do not over-knead or over-work the dough!

Kourabiethes Kourabiedes Kourampiedes Greek Shortbread
Admiring the pretty Kourabiethes (Greek Shortbread) that I baked last Christmas...
Kourabiethes Kourabiedes Kourampiedes Greek Shortbread
This recipe yielded an easy-to-handle eggless butter dough that made these nicely shaped cookies.
Kourabiethes Kourabiedes Kourampiedes Greek Shortbread
Crumbly, buttery and a little nutty... Yum!
Kourabiethes Kourabiedes Kourampiedes Greek Shortbread
And they look so pretty with a festive snowy look when they are dusted with icing sugar.

Want to see how I baked these pretty yummy cookies? It is so easy...

I hope that you will like this recipe. If you do and want to try more of my tried-and-tested recipes, please LIKE, SHARE and FOLLOW me at either my Facebook at here or here or my Instagram @zoebakeforhappykids or SUBSCRIBE my YouTube channel at here because every LIKE, SHARE and FOLLOW or SUBSCRIBE from you means a lot to a busy working mum like me. I will know that I'm in the right track and continue to bake and share more in the future. Thank you!!!

Here's the recipe that is modified and proportionally adjusted from the book, Country Women's Association of Australia (CWA): Biscuits and Slices, contributed by Judy Anictomatis from Darwin Branch, NT.

Makes about 55 x 5 cm round cookies
200g unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
20g icing sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla paste or extract
1 1/2 tsp Cointreau liqueur or brandy
200g all-purpose / plain flour
200g self-raising flour
1/4 tsp salt
45g almond meal

extra icing sugar to dust and serve - please note that the cookies are not sweet and they need to be served with icing sugar.

Preheat the oven to 150°C / 300°F.

Line baking trays with baking papers.

Using a wooden spoon or an electric mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar for 1-2 mins or until combined and fluffy. Add vanilla and Cointreau or brandy and beat until combined.

Sift both flour, salt and almond meal into the butter mixture. Discard any coarsely ground almond if required. Use a spoon or spatula to mix until mixture is combined. Gather and knead the crumbly mixture to form a dough. Roll it out into a smooth flat dough with 0.5cm thickness and cut into shapes.

Arrange onto the prepared baking trays, about 3-4 cm apart.

Bake for 15-20 mins or until light golden brown and thoroughly baked. Swap the trays around halfway through baking or until thoroughly baked at the base and edges. Baking duration may vary slightly due to the shape and size of the shortbread.

Allow shortbread to cool slightly on the tray for about 10 mins, then transfer to racks to cool completely.

Dust generously with icing sugar. Serve and enjoy. Store shortbread in an airtight container at room temperature for up 1 week.

Happy Baking
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