Saturday, December 24, 2011
pizzelle cookies - a holiday tradition
On Thursday night I was busy with my pizzelle press making pizzelle (singular is pizzella). They are an Italian cookie that I remember fondly from my childhood.
Our family doesn't have Italian roots, but the area I grew up in had an abundance of Italian immigrants come over in the late 1800s and consequently had generations of Italian Americans living there. We were always gifted boxes and tins of pizzelle from friends during my childhood and I came to associate it with Christmas.
After years of living without pizzelle, I finally purchased my own pizzelle press a few years back. I usually don't like to have on hand appliances that perform limited roles, but the nostalgia pull was strong enough that I did bite the bullet and paid about $40 for a pizzelle press that I use once a year.
Here's the recipe I use:
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup olive oil
3 cups flour
1 Tbsp aluminum-free baking powder
2 tsp. anise extract
confectioners' sugar to dust finished cookies
I pour all of the ingredients into the bowl for my stand mixer and mix until well blended. Then I drop about a Tablespoon of the batter onto my preheated pizzelle press. I close the top of the press and let it bake until I get a green light telling me they're ready. Then I carefully lift the two cookies out of the press and cool on a cooling rack. When mostly cooled I sift some powdered sugar on top and store in containers.
My girls LOVE them!
There are lots of pizzelle versions out there. Some folks make them with vanilla extract and some make chocolate pizzelle, but since this is a nostalgia food for me I always go with the anise flavor and powdered sugar on top.
Do you have a Christmas cookie that you absolutely must have each year?
- A 40 something mama meandering through life an 8 year old girl (the big girl) who is a ball of lightening and a 5 year old girl (the baby girl) who brightens our lives with her smiles. I'm grounded by my 40 something husband and partner (the hubster) whose quirky mannerisms brighten my days. Our family is rounded out with with an eclectic 21 year old boy-man (the boy) who I hardly ever right about now since he's off starting his own life.
I've been a single mama, married mama, divorced mama, career mama, SAHM, and WAHM. There was a short time of my life when I wasn't a mama, but that was a LONG time ago!
I hold an AA, BS, and MA and most say I'm wasting them by devoting my intellectual capabilities and energy in the nurture of the wee ones that I've been entrusted to raise, but there is nothing else I'd rather be doing these days. :)
I love hearing from readers, so please share your thoughts and leave comments, too!