“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas’.
It may have been a 2020, lock down was the new norm, travel was virtual, gift exchanges kerbside, but, oh well, it is that time of the year. Time to slow down, watch the old favourite Christmas movies even after you know the dialogues by heart, light the fire place and enjoy the snow clad landscape outside while getting some baking done.
Being a novice baker I stick to a variety of cookie recipes. Anise seed is quite common ingredient in Indian cuisine. It can be used as a mouth freshener or even a home remedy to counter nausea.
No wonder I was drawn to this recipe from “The Beach house kitchen”. The cookies turned out crisp, not overly sweet and the coarsely ground anise seeds sometimes lingered in the mouth for a last bite releasing that oh so wonderful liquorice taste.
Recipe; Adapted from ” The beach house kitchen “
Ingredients; Made 42 pieces, including the large and small ones.
All purpose flour 23/4 cup
Crushed anise seed 1 Tbsp
Baking powder 2 tsp
Unsalted butter 1 cup
Granulated sugar 1 cup
Vanilla extract 1 tsp
Egg ( Fake egg, see notes below ) 1 large
Sanding and icing sugar As needed to decorate.
Turn the oven at 350 degrees F
Take the flour. Mix the baking powder and coarsely ground anise seeds.
In a stand mixer, take the butter at room temperature and add the sugar. Mix till light and fluffy, about 3 minutes on high. Add the egg and vanilla extract, mix for another minute.
Turn the speed low and add the flour mixture in a couple instalments. Turn the mixer off as soon as the dough comes together.
Take it out on a work surface, divide in two halves, cover with cling film until ready to use. Take the first half on a floured surface, cover the dough with a wax paper and roll out to one fourth inch thickness. Use a three inch fluted cookie cutter for the outer circle and a one and half inch cutter for the inner circle. Carefully lift them up to a Sil pat lined baking sheet. Decorate with sanding sugar, I have used green and red.
Bake them for 10 to 12 minutes, till the sides just start to brown.
Collect them on a wire rack. Sprinkle some extra icing sugar on top
One fake egg : Mix together 2 Tbsp water, 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp canola or any vegetable oil.