Grace and a Great Greek Cookie

Delicious Finikia!
Delicious Finikia!

I am proud to say I am the grandchild of Greek immigrants. When I was growing up, and still to this day, the holidays were a splendid spread of amazing food and delectable pastries.

The Finikia Set Up Yiayia style!
The Finikia Set Up Yiayia style!

Lucky for me I have a daughter (Michelene) who has a desire to learn those old world recipes before my mom leaves this Earth. We’ve had two “cookie sessions” with my mom, fondly referred to as Yiayia by my daughter.

In these sessions, my mother completely sets up the entire event (as you can see above!), Cally snaps pictures and records video (priceless someday I’m sure), and I of course assist and sample the final delicious creations.

Yiayia decided on a soft nutty cookie called “Finikia” this time. If you have ever been to a Greek food festival, you have no doubt tried Finikia.

Getting ready....
My sister Cally on left, me on the right….Check out that bowl!

The most interesting part of this recipe was mixing  freshly squeezed orange juice into Cream of Wheat by hand. Then, this mixture was folded into the Crisco, egg, sugar, almond and flour batter and viola! a cookie of delicious-ness was born.

A separate hot syrup of sugar and water (with a splash of lemon!) was created and this is what we dipped the baked cookie in. Finally, we rolled them in ground walnuts and Yiayia sprinkled the cinnamon. Ah- they were amazing!

There is really something special about three generations of women coming together to learn a bit of their heritage. I imagine someday this will be a fond memory for my daughter who hopefully will teach her son, my grandson Gavin, how to make this wonderful cookie someday.

I think we ate at least a half dozen Finikia when they were done. Yiayia packed them all up for us so we were free to take them home to our family and friends. If you’re feeling ambitious, I’m attaching my mom’s recipe below for you to give a try. Happy Baking!

YiaYia sprinkling the Cinnamon
Yiayia sprinkling the Cinnamon
The Recipe
The Recipe
Join me on my graceful journey.

18 Replies to “Grace and a Great Greek Cookie”

  1. Another wonderful post, Jo — my favorite family coupled with my favorite cookie! I printed the recipe so I could have Kay’s handwriting, but I at least need a hint about oven temperature and time — help! Love you all!

    1. Lori, thank you for reminding me of this! I asked my mom and she said 350-400 degrees, and watch them closely for 5-10 minutes. She said “Don’t let them get too hard or too brown”. In other words, just watch them! Let me know how they turn out! xo Love you too!

  2. Oooo, these Greek cookies look so scrumptious. I wish I could taste your batch. And it’s a blessing to have family baking together. Thank you for sharing your wonderful tradition.

  3. Nothing beats ‘old world’ goodies, Joanne, and what a splendid day of three generations in the kitchen sharing, baking, loving! A treasured memory for a lifetime.

    Marianne xo

  4. Hi Joanne, my mouth is watering!! I can almost taste these cookies with a good cup of coffee. MMMMMM! What a wonderful experience for your daughter snd mom to share! How gratifing that has to be for you!! Great memories!!

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