Yes! Our recipe is for vegan Christmas Greek no-honey cookies (melomakarona)! We no longer need to be deprived of any pleasure. They are incredibly delicious, sweet as needed, and have an unsurpassed "honeyed" texture, especially the next day when the cookies have fully absorbed the syrup. Trust us, even your non-vegan friends won't tell the difference from the traditional melomakarona!
"Meli" in Greek means "honey", but these melomakarona are vegan. So, we don't use honey, but coconut sugar and agave syrup, which can be replaced with any vegan sugar and maple syrup respectively.
The origin of melomakarona is placed in the Middle Ages and it is said that it got its name from the Greek word "macaronia" which was the dinner of funeral services, during which they "blessed" the dead. The word "macaronia" comes from the word "makaria" which was bread, probably in the shape of today's melomakarona, and was offered after the funeral. At some point of its evolution, "makaria" was combined with honey, a version which prevailed. Thus, "makaria" along with "meli" (=honey) became "melomakarono".
Adding a lot of love, we change their name to "vegan Christmas Greek no-honey cookies ("melomakarona"), because vegan means empathy and love for all living creatures, such as bees 🙂
Today, we make them almost exclusively at Christmas as a traditional Christmas sweet, but nothing is stopping us from enjoying them all year long!
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Super easy and crowd-pleasing vegan Greek Christmas no-honey cookies (melomakarona)
- 1 cup water
- ⅔ cup coconut sugar
- ½ cup agave syrup
- a little lemon juice (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 160°C/320°F, in fan mode.
- In a large bowl put the olive oil, cognac, coconut sugar and orange zest and mix well with a whisk or fork.
- Then, in a small bowl, mix the soda with the orange juice. Add this mixture to the large bowl with the liquid ingredients.
- Next, add the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and clove into the large bowl, and mix with your hand until combined. Do not knead too much. Just enough to combine the ingredients, and no more so that the dough does not tighten and the melomakarona come out dry.
- Line a large baking pan with some parchment paper. Shape the melomakarona in the size and shape you want and put them in the baking pan. Slightly pierce them on top with a fork or toothpick to help them absorb the syrup later.
- Bake for about 20 minutes, depending on their size, or until lightly brown.
- While your melomakarona are baking, prepare the syrup. Mix all the ingredients for the syrup in a saucepan over low to medium temperature. Keep it warm until the melomakarona are baked.
- Once the melomakarona are ready, put them in batches in a deep dish and pour as much syrup as you want on both sides, depending on how syrupy or sweet you want them. Finally, sprinkle with the chopped walnuts.Enjoy!