Biscuits / Cookies

Passionfruit Kisses

I saw this recipe in a magazine a while ago and earmarked it for further investigation, but life got in the way and I promptly forgot about it. Then the other day while in our local fruit and vege shop, I noticed that Passionfruit were on sale. For those who have no idea what Passionfruit is, it is also known as a Granadilla. In South Africa we always referred to it as Granadilla, but when I called it that here in New Zealand, no-one knew what I was talking about – but regardless – it is the same sweetly tart fruity pulp filled with black seeds and is excellent on cheesecakes, in butter icing, smoothies, drizzled over ice cream or as I can now also confirm – in Passionfruit Kisses.

Local news reports have been full of weather warnings this past week with Cyclone Lusi heading our way, expected to begin lashing the north island some time tonight. High winds, lots of rain and very high tides are expected with the possibility of electricity outages also expected. This morning I checked out water storage; battery, candle and food supplies and we seem good to go. I decided the final item on my list was to get a bit of baking done while I could and am looking forward to snuggling up inside our warm home this weekend with a supply of these delightful cookies on hand. The biscuit texture is very similar to shortbread, except a lighter consistency while the deliciously tart icing will have you reaching for another cookie before you’ve finished the one in your mouth.

Passionfruit Kisses


(makes about 40 halves, so 20 cookies in total)
125 g unsalted butter, softened
¼ cup icing sugar, sifted
½ tsp vanilla essence
¾ cup flour
¼ cup cornflour (also known as mazena)
¼ tsp baking powder

Passionfruit icing:
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1½ – 2 Tbsp passionfruit syrup (fresh is always better, but you can buy it bottled from most large supermarkets)
1 cup icing sugar, sifted

  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C. Line two oven trays with baking paper (spray them lightly with oil so the paper sticks to the tray).
  2. Cream the butter and icing sugar with an electric beater until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  3. Add the vanilla essence.
  4. Sift in the flour, cornflour and baking powder. Use a spatula to fold gently together to form a soft dough.
  5. Using floured hands, form small balls of mixture. Place the balls on the prepared oven trays or pipe small rounds about 2cm in diameter – I used a piping bag and a nozzle with a 1cm round opening.
  6. Place the unbaked kisses in the fridge for about 15 minutes before baking. They seem to hold their shape better this way.
  7. Bake the balls for about 20 minutes, or until they are just starting to colour and set them aside on the trays to cool.
  8. To make the icing, mix all the ingredients together until they reach a smooth, spreadable consistency (not runny). I added a little more pulp as my mixture was too thick and not easy to spread – if this happens, the cookies will crumble when you try to ice them. DON’T add too much liquid.
  9. Sandwich the kisses together with a little icing and leave to set.

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