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Italian Anise Cookies




An old friend, who I don't really see much anymore, just experienced the passing of his father.  I have fond memories of spending time, years ago, with his family at various events and how small all of our children were.  It's hard to believe that those small children are now in high school and planning to go to college.  My heart goes out to his family.  These cookies remind me of the kind Italian man I had the pleasure of meeting.



3/4 cup sugar
1 stick butter (room temperature)
2 large eggs
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp. Anise extract
2 3/4 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
Glaze:
1 cup confectioners' sugar
4-5 tsp. milk
1 tsp. Anise extract
Colored nonpareils

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Spray cookie sheets with Pam.  Mix sugar, butter, eggs, Combine flour, baking powder and salt.  Mixing on low speed, alternate flour mixture with milk and anise extract until well incorporated. 

Measure dough with teaspoon and roll into ball.  Place on cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.


Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool on rack. 


Meanwhile, mix glaze ingredients.  Dip the top of cooled cookie in glaze.   Immediately sprinkle nonpareils on wet glaze.  I like to use different color nonpareils for the season.  I've noticed they are coming out with more and more color combinations. Let the glaze harden before storing in container.  Makes around 3-4 dozen, depending on size.


I like to double the recipe .You can also add a tiny bit more anise extract if you really like the flavor like I do.





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INGREDIENTS

CAKE

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa (I used dark)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. table salt
1 1/2 cups butter, room temperature
3 cups granulated sugar
5 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate morsels

C…