I tried these cookies at a recent holiday party and haven't been able to stop thinking about them since.
In texture, they were similar to Mexican wedding cakes - compact, a little crumbly, and wonderfully tender. But in flavor, they were more like gingerbread. The best gingerbread you've ever tasted.
Have you ever heard of these cookies?
These cookies only got more intriguing after I found the recipe. The dough is made with olive oil, orange juice, and (traditionally) semolina flour. It's spiced with cinnamon and clove, and then the baked cookies are soaked with a simple syrup of honey and water. Walnuts sprinkled on top are the coup de resistance.
Melomakarona are a traditional holiday treat in Greece. There appear to be many variations on the recipe. Some recipes stuff the walnuts inside. Others leave out the spices or add a shot of brandy. Almost all the recipes advocate making these cookies week or two ahead, saying that the flavor improves over time.
I can't wait to try making these for myself! Do you have a favorite recipe?
• Melomakarona Honey-Spice Cookies from the Washington Post
• Honey Cookies from Epicurious
• Melomakarona Orange-Spice Cookies from the Atlantic
• Greek Honey-Dipped Spice Cookies from What the Fruitcake?
(Image: Edward Park/Epicurious)