Kourabiedes are (κουραμπιέδες) Greek rose water biscuits, they’re very much like shortbread in terms of texture. When I was younger I got my first taste of Kourabiedes at the house of my mum’s friend, Elena. I remember biting into this beautifully light biscuit which had a delicate floral flavor covered in icing sugar. Since then I never forgot the gorgeous flavor which I soon learnt to be rose water.
You can buy rose water from most large supermarkets or middle eastern food shops. I bought mine from Wholefoods. I also added a little orange blossom to the biscuits, which can also be found from most large supermarkets.
As you will see in the ingredients I used ’00’ flour (also known as dopio zero) which is an Italian flour used to make pasta. It is made from coarsely ground durum wheat, and is very fine and white. The reason for this flour is mainly because it gives a very light texture which still retains the moisture of the biscuits.
If you scroll down further you will see a small spraying bottle, this is what I used to spray the biscuits with. You can buy these small bottles from places like Boots in the travelling section. Don’t hesitate to spray a lot of rose water on these biscuits!
250g unsalted butter
50g ground almonds
75g icing sugar (plus more for dusting)
2 tablespoons rose water
1 teaspoon orange blossom
1 teaspoon vanilla paste (extract)
1 tablespoon baking powder
100g ’00’ flour (Italian pasta flour)
200g plain flour
1. Turn the oven to 180C/Gas 3. Make sure the butter is a room temperature, or soft enough to whisk. Add the butter and icing sugar together and whisk till pale.
2. Add the ground almonds, vanilla, rose water, orange blossom and salt to the butter mixture and whisk again.
3. Now with a fork mix in both of the flours and baking powder to the butter. I recommend that you pour the flours into quarters as you mix it in. Mix until well combined. You may find that the mixture needs a little more ’00’ flour if it’s a bit too sticky to roll in your hands. I usually add a few tablespoons if this is the case.
4. The dough should be very light, and it will be quite delicate. Scoop tablespoons of the dough into your hands and lightly roll into small balls. You may roll less dough if you would like smaller biscuits. Once you’ve rolled your first ball put it onto a baking tray with greaseproof paper and press down in the middle to flatten it slightly. Do this until your baking tray is full, you may find you need to do this in two batches (I did).
5. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Whilst the biscuits are cooking pour some rose water into a small spraying bottle, the amount is up to you. Once the biscuits are golden, take them out of the oven and liberally spray with the rose water whilst hot. Leave aside to cool down slightly, then spray again with the rose water. Now finish off by dusting the biscuits with icing sugar, again be liberal with the icing sugar.
Now enjoy your rose water snowballs!
© Amelia Hallsworth – Photography, Coffee, Food & Recipes 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Amelia Hallsworth – Photography, Coffee, Food & Recipes with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.