Backstage at the LA Opera

Hosted by

The Ring Music

Orchestra Pit

The Orchestra Pit

Evan, Kazi and Flo

Flo, Kazi and Evan

Snack Table

Flo oversees the snack table

Flo's Spanikopita

Flo's Spanikopita

Kazi's Snack

Kazi's Snack

Kazi Pitelka is a violist with the LA Opera Orchestra.  They are currently performing Wagner's Ring Cycle.  The opera is over 17 hours long, performed over 4 nights.  The musicians prepare by bringing snacks for the intermissions. 

Flo's Cookies

Flo Titmus'  Melomakarona Cookies (Honey Walnut Stuffed Cookies)

First you must make a delicious Spicey Honey Syrup
1 cup honey 2 cinnamon sticks
1 cup sugar 3 whole clove
1 1/2 cup water Orange zest - more like big strips

In a small saucepan bring all ingreidiants to a boil and cook on medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

Pre-heat your oven to 350

The next step is making the stuffing:

1 to 1 1/2 cup walnut bits 1 tsp vanilla or vanilla paste
2 Tablespoons honey 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Put ingredients in food processor and grind until it has a fine texture.

Cookie dough:

4 1/2 to 5 cups flour 2 tsp gr. cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder 1 tsp ground clove
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

sift these ingredients together into a large bowl

1 1/2 cup good quality LIGHT olive oil
3/4 cup sugar
Juice of one large orange
1 tbsp orange zest
1/4 cup cognac or grand marnier

Beat oil and sugar together for 10 minutes until you get a creamy texture. Add orange juice, zest and cognac and beat for another 5 or 6 minutes. Add flour mixture into liquid slowly and mix together until a soft dough forms. Knead, adding more flour if necessary, until dough is soft but not stiff.

Now for the fun part:

Shape Dough 1 1/2 to 2 tbsp dough into a large round in the palm of your hand, put a tsp of the walnut stuffing and wrap dough around it.

Shape into a round cylinder and place on greased cookie sheet.

I like to add a walnut half for decoration on top, press down.

Bake in oven for 25 to 30 minutes until golden.

Remove from Oven and cool on a rack.