Playing Kourambiedes (Greek Shortbread Cookies)

We challenged Columbia University student Niko to make his Greek shortbread cookies in a toaster oven for our "Spring Bake" competition. Beating the batter until it’s super-fluffy makes these buttery treats light and airy. Chopped almonds add a nuttiness and they’re finished with a dusting of powdered sugar.

  • 1/2 pound sweet butter, (2 sticks) at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 egg, yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, pure
  • 1/4 cup almonds, finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • Confectioner's sugar, for dusting

Preheat oven to 350˚F.

In a standing mixer, cream butter until light and fluffy. Add sugar and beat until smooth. Mix in egg yolk, vanilla and almonds. Gradually add flour until dough comes together; it should feel tacky to the touch. Form into oval shapes and place on an ungreased baking sheet about an inch apart (if baking in a toaster oven, you'll probably need to bake off in several batches depending on the size of your baking sheet and oven). Bake until golden-brown in a toaster oven (or regular oven), about 25 to 30 minutes.

Let cookies cool to lukewarm. Place confectioners' sugar in a bowl, then add cookies and toss to coat completely.

As this was our Spring "Bake," we gave the winner — actually, both of our college bakers, because they were BOTH so good! — a spring break trip! Both received five nights at the all-inclusive, five-star Iberostar Rose Hall Suites (complete with seven restaurants!) in Montego Bay, Jamaica. (YAS!) Watch the video above to learn more about the amazing vacation locale!

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