Have you ever thought making a cake without any added sugar? This is an ancient and very simple recipe that varies in different regions or different islands of Greece. People used back then grape molasses or petimezi as sweetener in baking, and it does work wonders.

Ingredients:

1 cup olive oil
1 ½ cups grape molasses
1 cup orange juice
peel from 1 orange
3 cups flour
1tsp baking soda
1tbs baking powder
1tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ cup crushed almonds or walnuts (optional)

Instructions:

Mix the olive oil with the grape molasses. Add the soda into the orange juice, orange peel, spices, then add into the olive oil and molasses mix. Add the baking powder into the flour and then stir into the molasses. Combine slowly until a thick batter forms. Pour the batter into a well greased pan and bake for about 1 hour into a preheated oven at 180 oC.

Buy our grape molasses


These biscuits are perfect for Holy Week’s frugal diet – especially Holy (or Great) Friday’s. Many devout do not cook on Holy Friday, but if they do, traditional foods are simple, usually boiled in water (without oil) and seasoned with vinegar – like beans – or thin soups like tahinosoupa, a soup made with tahini.

Petimezi Biscuits are often prepared in advance and pair wonderfully with homemade jams or raw honey. We love having them with olive leaf tea, mountain tea or wild mountain herbs, like sage.

Preparation: 30’ Wait: 1 hour & 45’ in total Baking: 45-50’

Ingredients

1 portion of dry yeast
500g all-purpose flour and 500g soft flour sifted and mixed
200ml evoo –we recommend using our 22°C
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 glass of petimezi/ grape molasses

Method

Sprinkle yeast over ½ cup of lukewarm water and let it stand for 10 mins. Afterwards, add 2 teaspoons of flour, stir to combine and leave it to rise for about 15 minutes.

In a large bowl combine flour, drizzle some evoo and knead it until it looks like tiny pasta. Add spices and yeast to the mix and stir to combine. Later add petimezi to the mix, stirring between additions and knead gently. The dough should be smooth, elastic and firm. If needed, we can add some water – or flour- to achieve the desired texture. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for approximately 45 mins.

Transfer the dough onto a floured surface and knead the biscuits to the desired size and form. Place the biscuits on a large baking pan (covered with lightly greased baking paper) in about 5cm apart as they really grow in size. Cover loosely with a towel or plastic wrap, let them rise for about 45-50’ and preheat the oven in the meanwhile. Finally, bake the biscuits at 180°C for 45-50 mins. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Enjoy!

Inspired by Voutsina E. (2009, April), Easter at the countryside, Gastronomos,  36.]


Are you familiar with the song: “Sugar is sweet/ But not as sweet as my baby/ Honey’s a treat but it/ Can’t compete with my baby”? It seems like they have never tried grape molasses! In Greece when we want to say that something/ someone is really sweet, we say they are sweet like petimezi. One great thing about our health awareness and sugar rush/ tax era is rediscovering excellent ingredients like this one. Grape molasses or petimezi, is an ancient food, popular for its nutritious qualities and delightful flavour. Before establishing the use of sugar, petimezi was very commonly used across the Mediterranean and especially Greece, not only as a sweetener but as a remedy as well.

Petimezi’s flavour is sweet with a hint of spice and its aroma is pungent, potent and so incredibly tempting. This excellent product comes from boiling grape-must in low heat for a long time. It is rather expensive since the production process is long and the yield is small. Its texture is quite similar to aged balsamic vinegar; if you are an Ottolenghi fan, then you are definitely familiar with pomegranate molasses and can use petimezi, accordingly.

Continue reading →