Traditional Christmas sweets..

What makes Christmas traditional?  The first step, of course, is decorating the Christmas tree.. Then you have to prepare some traditional christmas sweets! In Greece during this holiday season,  kourabies and melomakarono are the most popular! Of course there are different recipes but the typical ingredients are more or less the same. For melomakarono are : flour, sugar, orange juice and zest, cinnamon, oil and brandy. For kourabies the main ingredients are : almonds, fresh butter, brandy, flour and lots of icing sugar!

IMG_1775

Which are the origins of their names however?

Qurabiya in Azerbaijani, Kurabiye, in Turkish and Kourabies in Greek, it literally means Kuru = dry, biye = μπισκότο (cookie). Μπισκότο etymologically derived from the Latin bis-cuit, which means baked twice, in Italian it’s called biscotto.

You would think that melomakarono has an Italian origin right? It’s etymology instead is ancient greek, “μακαρόνι” is obtained from the medieval greek word “μακαρωνία”, a funerary dinner based on pasta. The word “μακαρωνία” derives from the ancient “μακαρία”, which was a piece of bread offered after the funeral, in the shape of the melomakarono. When they added honey syrup on “μακαρία” it was called  μέλι+μακαρία = μελομακάρονο, and that was when it was established as a sweet. Latins and later on Italians, used the word “μακαρωνία” as maccarone and spaghetti eventually! Finally in France and England, from the Middle Ages, a kind of almond biscuit was named «macaroon» (known to everyone today “macaron”).

IMG_1401

IMG_1385

IMG_1407

IMG_1425

IMG_1443

IMG_1484

IMG_1515

IMG_1550

IMG_1563

IMG_1565

IMG_1585

IMG_1596

IMG_1602

IMG_1642_Snapseed

IMG_1673

IMG_1707

photos © chrysoula papagianni

Previous Post
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: