I think every country has a version of this cookie. The ingredients tend to be the same with some variations but the results are always delicious. Kourambiethes is a Greek cookie made primarily with lots of butter, not too much icing sugar and a couple of egg yolks. How could that possibly result in a bad cookie?! This is adapted from Michael Symons and is 2017 Christmas Treat #5 – Kourambiethes.

The idea of a Greek cookie came from one of my patrons at an evening class. She simply said, you should make a Greek cookie. So here it is! In Goa we make a version of this called Snowballs, in Mexico they call them Wedding Cookies. So really this is a variation. The Goan version doesn’t call for any alcohol for flavor or eggs for richness, but use cardamom and ghee respectively – much stronger components. But I like this version with the egg yolks. I couldn’t taste the brandy (and I used more than 2 tbsp.) but they still tasted great.

Nice dough, but be careful with the addition of the flour. Start with 4 and then add additional flour by the tablespoon as needed. I used 4.5 cups with the Churn 84 – the higher fat content butter I bake with. You will know it is ready when you squeeze some in your hand and it stays in shape and doesn’t fall apart. I found the easiest way to make this – really any crescent cookie like this, was to roll a piece about 2” then push it gently between your index and middle finger to form a crescent. Place it on the cookie tray and continue to shape. There is a lot to be said for those folks that make hundreds of these and they are all perfect. Mine are far from perfect in shape but oh my goodness so good to eat.

I made some round as the two different shapes will look good on my sweet table. So to all my Greek friends, this is my attempt at Kourambiethes. So tasty! As always – enjoy!

1 pound cold European Style Churn 84 unsalted butter, cut into large pieces
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus extra for dusting
2 tablespoons brandy – I used Calvados
4 to 5 cups all-purpose flour, sifted – I used about 4.5 cups

Preheat the oven to 350f
Beat butter and sugar for 10 minutes using a stand or electric mixer – it should be very light in color and creamy in texture, shouldn’t be difficult as you are using icing sugar not granulated sugar
Beat the egg yolks and vanilla in a separate bowl until lemon-colored, 1 minute
Add egg mixture and brandy to the butter/sugar in the mixer
Add the flour by the cup into the mixer – when incorporated, add another cup
Stop when you get to 4 – if needed add by the tbsp. and mix until a dough starts to form
Shape teaspoonful’s of dough into small crescents or balls – the balls I made weighed 13g and baked in about 20 minutes – and place on the parchment lined baking tray
Bake until very lightly browned – about 25 minutes
Cool for about 10 minutes on the baking sheets
Sprinkle liberally with sifted confectioners’ sugar while the cookies are still warm
Continue to cool to room temperature
Like any butter laden dough, if it gets too soft, refrigerate for a few minutes to firm up – it will make the shaping easier