The greek "cookies" Melomakarona and Kourampiedes never miss from any Greek house during Christmas. But what is their history?
From the ancient “makaria” to Christmas
Who does not drip honey when he speaks about melomakarona. The best is crispy outside and quite honeyed inside, sprinkled with plenty of nut and fragrant spices. The etymology of the word -meli and makaroni- is Greek, with macaroni being originated from the word "makaronia" which used to be a funerary dinner during which they offered “makaria", otherwise a pie in which over the years they added honey and that’s why it was named melomakarono. And if you are wondering why it was established as a Christmas dessert, the answer lays in honey, already considered by the ancient years as a symbol of well-being and creation, everything that we want the New Year to bring us.
A tradition from East
Nobody has managed to eat kourampiedes without even slightly being dusted with icing sugar, but the taste is worth every sacrifice. For the perfect kourampiedes you need good quality fresh butter, lots of almonds and, of course, plenty of icing sugar. Some also add rose water for extra flavour. As for what the story is? The word kourampies comes from the Turkish word kurabiye meaning dry biscuit, but it has Arabic roots. In dry biscuit later almonds were added and icing sugar and this is how we got to know our favourite kourampiedes, that we place in platters laminated as snowy mountains.