Traditional Anise Seeds Biscuits
By yasmine • March 20, 2017
These Anise Seeds Biscuits are a trip down memory lane for my family. Preparing them and filling the kitchen with the smell lets me think of my grandmother’s house and our family lunches ending with dipping these biscuits in the grown-ups hot teas. Our family calls it ‘our biscotti’ (like the Italian), because it looks and smells like it, yet we find it lighter and easier to chew. This is a fool-proof recipe (after 4 trials), even if the oddness of the dough (it is not a cake nor is it a cookie dough) scares you with its difficulty to handle when you placing it in the tray, the biscuits turn out crispy, light and delicious in all cases.
Although I am not a fan of using sunflower oil, this recipe desperately needs the oil for that airy crispiness. Also, the anise seeds amounts should be to your preference, but for a real taste and aroma, don’t use less than the 3 tablespoons specified.
- 3 tablespoon anise (seeds) - ينسون
- 4 large eggs - بيض
- 1/2 sugar - سكر
- 1/2 cup oil - زيت
- 3 tablespoon butter (melted OR another 1/4 oil) - زبدة
- 1 lemon zest (OR 2 teaspoon vanilla extract) - قشر الليمون
- 3 cup all purpose flour - دقيق أبيض
- 2 teaspoon baking powder - باكينج باودر
- 1/4 teaspoon salt - ملح
Step by step
- Preheat oven to 180C. Line a standard 20x40cm (or a 30cm diameter) oven tray with about 1cm depth with parchment paper brushed with 1/2 tablespoon melted butter and sprinkle with 1/2 tablespoon flour.
- To melt the butter, place it in a small pot on lowest heat stirring continuously for a minute. You just need all the lumps to smoothen out without the butter heating. Set aside to cool for a couple of minutes.
- Using an electric mixer, beat eggs in a medium bowl until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Then add sugar and beat for another 4 minutes. This step helps the biscuits be nice and airy from the inside.
- Follow with melted butter, oil, lemon zest and anise seeds.
- Sift flour with baking powder and salt. Then add it slowly to the mixing bowl until fully blended. The consistency of this dough will be something between the softness of cake dough and thickness of a cookie batter.
- Tip the whole dough in the oven tray. Use a greased spatula to level out the dough over the whole tray. Sprinkle the remaining anise seeds on top and place it in the middle of the oven for 20 minutes.
- Let the biscuits cool for about 15 minutes before vertically slicing it into 1cm strips then into biscotti size rectangulars by making 4 to 5 horizontal slices.
- Flip biscuits to the side (you might need another oven tray in case one doesn't fit) and place them back in the oven for 5 minutes on each side or until slightly browned.
- Enjoy them with your teas and coffees for up to 7 days stored in an airtight container.
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