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12 Days of Cookies Day 5: Kourabiedes

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We’re revisiting a popular (and award winning) program at AVRL: The 12 Days of Cookies! From 2011 to 2017, AVRL staff baked and shared cookies with library visitors across the Annapolis Valley for 12 delicious days over the holiday season. Each recipe was a family favourite or a recipe from a cookbook found in the AVRL catalogue. While we are not able to share cookies the same way this year, we can still share the classic recipes for you to try at home!

Originally published on Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Today’s cookies are baked by Tim Jackson, who works in our Community Engagement Department.

During Christmastime in their native Greece, each of these almond cookies is crowned with a whole clove to symbolize the spices brought to the Christ child by the three wise men.

Prep time: 40 minutes  Bake time: 15 to 20 minutes


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup sifted powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoon brandy or orange juice
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped almonds or walnuts
  • Whole cloves
  • Sifted powdered sugar
  1. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the 2/3 cup powdered sugar and the baking powder. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg yolk, brandy or orange juice, and vanilla until combined. Using a wooden spoon, stir in flour and almonds or walnuts.
  2. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Insert the stem end of a whole clove in center of each cookie.
  3. Bake in a 325 oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Makes about 60 cookies.

From Cookies for Christmas by Jennifer Dorland Darling


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