Nonna's Anise Cookies

Nonna's Anise Cookies, perhaps one of the most popular cookie from the Italian cuisine.  It can be adapted for any holiday or occasion.  Just change the color of the icing and the sprinkles and you have the perfect cookie!


For 2 Dozen(s)

For the Cookies:

  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon anise extract (you can adjust the flavor to your liking)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Icing:

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon anise extract or Sanbuca liqueur
  • 1 drop any food coloring
  • white nonpareils
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  1. For the Cookies:
    1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
    2. In a large mixing bowl beat the eggs with an electric mixer until foamy.  Set aside
    3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment combine the flour, sugar and baking powder. Mix on low speed and gradually add in the butter and extracts until the mixture resembles crumbs.
    4. Add in the beaten eggs and mix until a stiff dough forms.
    5. Roll about 1 rounded teaspoon of dough into balls and place about 2 inches apart on an ungreased 13x18 baking sheet.
    6. Bake for 10-12 minutes. The cookies will be slightly cracked on top. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  2. To make the Icing:
    1. In a small bowl mix together the confectioners sugar, heavy cream, milk, extract and food coloring.  If you prefer a thinner icing you can thin it out with more cream or milk. Spoon over the cookies and decorate with sprinkles. Allow the icing to dry completely.

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