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Kourabies cookies - Greek recipe for Rosh Hashanah:

Dana R. Shavit - My Greek grandmother recipe

In honor of Rosh Hashanah and in honor of my 93-year-old Greek grandmother god bless her, this year I chose to introduce you to a special Rosh Hashana recipe from the secrets of my grandmother's kitchen.

Sharina Sara (Sonia) Cohen, was born in Volos in 1929, the center of the Hellenic mainland. A city lies between Athens in the south and Thessaloniki in the north, at the foot of the mountainous Pilion peninsula, the daughter of Ilias Cohen, originally from Ioannina, a Romani Greek, and Dudu Cohen from Volos, Greek of distant Spanish origin.

Sara, who received the nickname Sonia during World War II, immigrated to Israel illegally, as part of the youth immigration. During the war she served as a messenger girl delivering messages between the partisan posts in the Pilion Mountains.

After immigrating to Israel and being sent to Kibbutz Tel Hai, one day she received a letter from her aunt. The letter was given to her by a young Greek man from Tel Aviv, who immediately fell in love with the beautiful maiden and realized that it was from that moment until the end of their days.

And this man is my grandfather, may peace be upon him Sachia Isaiah (Sharlo) Cohen, who was born in Serres in the region of Macedonia in northern Greece, the son of Avraham Cohen from Kavala and Strea (Kochva) of Serres, both Greeks who came generations back from Spain.

The young couple settled in the Shapira neighborhood in south Tel Aviv and then in Jaffa in the 1950s, back at the days these areas where the Greek community flourished. The houses were open and the atmosphere was warm and thus, the recipes were passed from kitchen to another, there my grandmother learned to make Kourabies cookies from Mrs. Anna Amir, which is being made up until today with the same piety and according to the same recipe of my grandmother by here lawful Filipino assistant Irene. And believe me, my grandmother, to this day on guard, which will be exactly as always.

So, there is the written Torah and there is the oral Torah as in every recipe, I bring you here a combination of the written and the oral and the knowledge that it is... wow delicious and I am already waiting for Rosh Hashanah to bless the Kourabies.

And if you've whetted your appetite by this point, feel free to continue to the full recipe



400 grams of butter (originally 200 grams of butter and 200 grams of butter)

1 cup chopped nuts

6 tablespoons of powdered sugar (originally fine sugar)

2 spoons of cognac (not a must)

2-3 vanilla sugar

2 cups plain flour

1 cup of self-rising flour (Osem)

Oral Tradition

Lemon zest from one lemon

Lemon juice to taste

You can replace walnuts with almonds, you can mix both

For coating

powdered sugar (a lot)


Heat the oven to 170 degrees

Mix all ingredients together dough is preformed

Roll out the dough on a buttered surface to a height of about 1 centimeter and cut out circles with an inverted glass.

From the circles, cut another piece in half of the circle so that a crescent shape is obtained.

Place in a pan lined with baking paper and place in the refrigerator for a few minutes to cool

In the meantime, until the tray cools down a bit

prepare another pan😊

Take the pan out of the fridge and put it in the oven to bake for about 15-20 minutes, until the cookies get a delicate golden hue.

Remove from the oven and place the Kourabies aside with the pan to cool. *It is important not to try to pick up the cookies when they are hot, they will fall apart.

Sprinkle powdered sugar on the cold cookies ... and a lot!!

Served as a blessing for a good and sweet New Year at the holiday table and on Yom Kippur after returning from the synagogue.

Enjoy! Here we are 4 generations. Grandma, mom, me, my daughter.

And here is the original recipe, in the handwriting of my grandmother Sara Sarina (Sonia)


Have a happy and sweet new year everyone Dana R. Shavit


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