Happy New Year!

Here’s to raising a glass and wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.
Christmas 2014Happy New Year and lots of love from Yianni and I. Love from Ben, Jason, Rahbi, Max, and also our Yorkies, Stanley and Stella.

If you are wondering if the little boys and I made our annual Christmas koulouria, the answer is yes, of course! Can you find which are mine? Which ones are made by the boys?koulouria2014Here’s the recipe. Happy New Year!

Koulouria
Author: 
Recipe type: Cookies
Cuisine: Greek
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 dozen
 
My Mother's recipe for Greek butter cookies.
Ingredients
  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup whipping cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vegatable oil
  • 3 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Zest of one orange or 2 tsp. orange extract
  • 4 to 5 cups of all purpose flour
  • Small jar of sesame seeds
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugar.
  2. Add eggs.
  3. Mix well.
  4. Add in cream, vanilla, oil and zest.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix the rest of the dry ingredients.
  6. Slowly add dry ingredients to form a firm but pliable dough.
  7. Using about a tsp of dough, roll with hands on counter surface in long ropes,
  8. Then fold in half and twist into a braid like cookie.
  9. Place on cookie sheet.
  10. Brush tops of cookies with egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  11. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.

Merry Christmas! Blessings and Cookies

Merry Christmas from my family to yours! Here is Yianni with Stella, me with Stanley and our son Rahbi in our annual Christmas photo.

You know I always make Christmas koulouria with these two adorable boys, Benjamin and Maxwell Hammond. They’re always a big help!

That’s my Christmas koulouria recipe ICYMI.

koulouria

I have to make another batch for these handsome men, Rahbi and Jason Hammond.

And there might just be a little box of koulouria under our tree for Malvina Mirowski!

I am also so happy for the blessing of welcoming my cousin Stathi back home to our wonderful state of Michigan! Welcome home Stathi! Be sure to visit his organization named for his daughter, that helps families of children with cancer and blood disorders, Lainie’s Angels. If you can, I ask that you give to this philanthropic cause in her name.

Here is my Nouna with all my Grand Rapids cousins. What a beautiful family: Chris, Becky, Nouna Tina, Georgia and Stathi.

Merry Christmas!  Jesus the Christ is born! Glorify Him!

And so the kings have come, and they have seen the heavenly King that has come upon the earth, not bringing with Him Angels, nor Archangels, nor Thrones, nor Dominations, nor Powers, nor Principalities, but, treading a new and solitary path…

So, the Father of all ages, as an infant at the breast, nestles in the virginal arms, that the Magi may more easily see Him.  Since this day the Magi too have come, and made a beginning of withstanding tyranny; and the heavens give glory, as the Lord is revealed by a star.

To Him, then, Who out of confusion has wrought a clear path, to Christ, to the Father, and to the Holy Spirit, we offer all praise, now and for ever.  Amen.

St. John Chrysostom’s Christmas Homily

Annual Holiday Koulouria

Every year I make Christmas Koulouria with my grandsons, Maxwell and Benjamin, just like I did with my son, Robert when he was growing up. It’s our holiday tradition. The only thing different with this year’s recipe [or I should say, last year’s] is that we used unbleached flour, experimented with a chocolate ganache filling and some sugar sprinkles. Here’s a video of the fun and festivities. [We used our 15 year old Canon DV camcorder, so you might see a quick battery icon, time stamp and ‘play’ flash by… try to ignore it. It’s vintage technology but it still works!]

Yes, there really is a Hammond’s Candies, but no relation. If you haven’t had one, you must try one of their marshmallow and caramel Mitchell sweets. They’re chewy, gooey and delicious.

Koulouria 12/2012
Christmas Koulouria – printable recipe at the bottom of this post.

Hammond Xmas 2012
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Hammond Family!
May we all have love, peace and prosperity in 2013!

Annual Holiday Koulouria
Author: 
Recipe type: sweet / baking
Cuisine: Greek
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Every year I make Christmas cookies with my grandsons, Maxwell and Benjamin, just like I did with my son, Robert, when he was a boy. This is my Mom's recipe for Greek butter cookies.
Ingredients
  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup whipping cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Zest of one orange or 2 tsp. orange extract
  • 4 to 5 cups of all purpose flour
  • Small can of sesame seeds
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugar.
  2. Add eggs.
  3. Mix well.
  4. Add in cream, vanilla, oil and zest.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix the rest of the dry ingredients.
  6. Slowly add dry ingredients to form a firm but pliable dough.
  7. Using about a tsp of dough, roll with hands on counter surface in long ropes, then fold in half and twist into a braid like cookie.
  8. Place on cookie sheet.
  9. Brush tops of cookies with egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.

 

Maxwell’s Merry Christmas Koulouria

Max Kristmas Koulourakia 2011 Every Christmas I make my Mother’s traditional butter cookies, Greek Koulouria. I used to make them with my son, Robert, when he was much younger. Now, I make them with  my Grandson Maxwell.

All shapes and sizes! Letters too! Max likes to make his cookies in the shape of the initials of the person to whom he is giving.

Traditional twisted shaped Koulouria This Yiayia likes to make them in the traditional twist shape like her  Mother did. Benjamin

 

Benjamin likes to help, which means spreading Christmas cheer and flour everywhere. Let's flour Dad's head

 

 

 

 

Sometimes the need arises for a little horsing around with Dad. In the end, there is a feeling of great accomplishment and of course, learning about the gift of giving something handmade.

Merry Christmas! May you have a blessed Christmas with family and friends and may all your Christmas dreams come true!

With love, Kitoula

Hammond Merry Christmas 2011