Mediterranean cuisine for every day

Melomakarona – a Greek Christmas classic – Mελομακάρονα

6 comments Dec 12th, 2009 | By | Category: Bread and Baking, Desserts and Sweets, Recipes

These little, soft cookies that are dipped into a Honey syrup you can only find around Christmas here in Greece. Melomakarona are made form late November on, they are the classic Greek Christmas cookie. You can find them in bakeries but also may of the small grocery stores around the neighbourhood sell these home made sweets on big trays. I love this juicy cookie so I had to try to make them. Melomakarona, as well as Ravani, are sweets that a baked dry and then dipped into a Syrup from honey, orange, cinnamon and cloves. The trick is to make them soft but not soggy, light but not falling apart.

A great french language version of this cookie I found at en direct d´Athenes as well as a “Greek moms version” on Yannis blog, my little baklava.

Preparation: 15 minutes

baking time: 25 minutes

have to sit over night

medium difficult recipe


    for the Melomakarona:

  • 220 ml light olive oil
  • 50 gram sugar
  • 220 ml orange juice
  • lemon and orange zest
  • 150 ml Metaxa (Cognac)
  • 1,5 ts baking powder
  • 250 gram fine semolina
  • 350 gram flour (maybe a bit more)
  • 150 gram chopped walnuts
  • for the syrup:

  • 250 ml honey
  • 100 gram sugar
  • 200 ml water
  • lemon and orange zest
  • grounded cloves
  • cinnamon stick
  • chopped walnuts


Mix the olive oil with the sugar and the orange juice.

Blend half of the flour with the baking powder. Mix the fower mixture with the olive oil orange juice mix.

Add the metaxa, the wallnuts and the semolina adn mix well. Add orange and lemon zest to the dough.

This should result in runny bur thick dough. Now you have to knead the remaining flower into the mixture until you have a hunid, non sticky gough.

Let it rest for an hour.

Now you can form the little oval cookies that are just like oversized olives. Place them onto baking paper on a tray. Press them with a fork jsut a loittle bit, so they get an inprint. This the typical pattern of the cookies.

Bake the cookies in the preheated oven at 180 degrees centigrade for 25 minutes. Then let them cool down.

Fpr preparing the syrup you have to just put all the ingredients into a small pot and let them simmer for a few minutes.

Dip the cookies into the syrup and let them soak for a couple of minutes. Then place them on a roasting tray. They should sit on the roasting tray over night in order to soak perfectly. You can check on them occasionally and even dip them once more. It is good to use up all the syrup that you made. The cookies need some time to soak and will develop their taste fully over night. This is true slow food!

Be careful though that the cookies never sit for a long time in the syrup in order not to get soggy.

The next day place the cookies on a plate and sprinkele some crushed wallnuts over them.

The cookies will be good for approximately 10 days.

The German version od this recipe you will find here

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  1. So easy to do them at home !
    I take one !
    Thanks !

  2. Christmas isn’t complete without the aroma of Melomekarena…a must and these look really good!

  3. hi tobias
    I am sure the smell in the kitchen was great ! I love these !!
    cheers from Paris PIerre

  4. Melomakarona are probably my favorite cookies ever. They are so perfect for the holidays, but I could eat them year round. Yours look great!

  5. Oooh, these are my favourite Greek holiday cookie!!! I have a total addiction to the little guys and although this might be blasphemous, I LOVE them when they’re soggy…..

  6. [...] Die englische Version der Melomakarona finden Sie hier. [...]

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