What we have here folks is the basic traditional Italian Easter Cookie. Let's face it, every Italian family puts there own spin on this simple recipe. Some add lemon or almond flavor, it really is a personal thing. I added a few simple, commonly used American spices, nothing that would scare my hubby like anise. I personally love black licorice flavor! Hubby, not so much. These cookies also come in a variety of shapes. There is the flattened ball, which is what I made, but you can get fancy and do twists or braids! I am about to hand you the basic recipe and you can run with it as far as your taste buds desire!!! You add your twist!!
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1/2 stick of butter, softened
- 3 eggs
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 cups flour (We like to mill our own with our WonderMill)
- I added in 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, but feel free to experiment! That's half the fun of baking!
- Powdered sugar and a dash of milk to make a glaze
- Colored sugar and/or sprinkles
Start by combining the sugar, oil, orange juice, butter and eggs in a bowl. Once those ingredients are combined, add in the baking powder, baking soda, salt and vanilla. Now go grab your mixer. *gasp* I know, I rarely us one of those, but this is a thick dough and you arm will be tired trying to get all the flour mixed in!
For my cookies, I used half of a heaping spoonful of dough. I rolled them in the palms of my hands and placed them on an UNgreased cookie sheet. I the used the palm of my hand to slightly flatten them. This makes them cook more evenly and easier to decorate later on, in my opinion. Preheat your over to 350 degrees. Now depending on how large you made your cookies, they will bake for 10-15 minutes. Mine took 10 minutes. Just remember, bigger means longer.
While the cookies are baking, grab some milk and powdered sugar to make a thicker glaze to dip the cookie tops in. This is what will secure the traditional colored sugar to the tops of the cookies. We also used some other cookie decorating sprinkles, as well as an ice cream topping type sprinkle. Remember, baking is about experimenting. Once the cookies have been dipped, put the colored sugar/sprinkles on fairly fast as the powdered sugar mixture will set up into a glaze pretty quickly.
So what are you waiting for? Get baking and then grab a nice glass of milk and a plate of Easter, ummm I mean anytime Italian cookies. Who says it has to be Easter! And if you need further proof that these cookies rock.... check out the littlest country kid who was snitching dough left and right before they were even baked!!
|"I'm not doing anything...."|