Makes about 40 cookies

Syrup

7 cups sugar

8 cups water

2 cups honey

2 cinnamon sticks

2 wide strips of orange peel

 

Dough

6 -6 1/2 cups pastry flour

1 1/2 cups fine semolina flour

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

113g unsalted butter (room temperature)

1/2 cup brandy (Metaxa)

2 Tbsp honey

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/2 cups orange juice

zest of 1 orange (1 Tbsp)

4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. ground clove

1/2 tsp. baking soda

3 tsp. baking powder

 

Ground walnut topping

1 1/2 cups walnuts

1/3 cup brown sugar

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 ground clove

 

Preheat your oven at 180 C.

First make your syrup

In a pot add the sugar, water, honey, orange peel and cinnamon stick and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10mins. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Then the cookies

Into a large bowl, add the sugar, olive oil, and butter. Blend with your mixer for 5mins and then add the cinnamon and clove and mix in as well. Dissolve the baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, orange zest, orange juice and honey into the brandy and pour into the bowl.

Now add the baking powder and semolina flour into the bowl and mix with your hands. Add the pastry flour in, one cup at a time and knead in with your hands until you’ve achieved a soft, pliable dough that’s not sticky. Put the dough aside and allow to rest covered for 30 minutes.

Using your hands, roll the dough into small balls (about the size of walnuts) and form them into oval/quenelle shaped shaped cookies.

Take your grater (the side used to zest) and place a cookie on top of it. Press the cookie down a bit to form a grid pattern on the top of the cookie. Repeat this process for all the cookies.

Place your cookies on a baking sheet. Bake in a pre-heated oven (middle rack) for 30 minutes. Using a large slotted spoon, drop the hot cookies in batches into the cool syrup and keep them there for about 10mins, allowing them to absorb the syrup then flip for 3 minutes on the other side. Reserve on a cooling rack and repeat until all the cookies are dunked in syrup.

For the topping

Add the above ingredients in a bowl mix well with a spoon. Brush each cookie with the remaining syrup and then sprinkle each cookie top with the walnut topping. Allow to cool.

Store in a cool, dry container for up to a month.

 

*** Source: www.kalofagas.ca

*** Photo courtesy of Myrto Lazopoulou from Foodsnaps