By Cheryl Alters Jamison
Whether you spell it biscochito or bizcochito, you’ll call these cookies wonderful.
Makes about 6 dozen medium-size cookies
- 5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 pound lard, at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1½ tablespoons ground anise seeds
- ½ cup orange juice, fresh or from concentrate
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) whiskey
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the cookies
- Preheat oven to 425° F.
- Sift together 5 cups flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Beat lard in electric mixer, gradually adding sugar until extremely light and fluffy; about 8 minutes. Stop mixer every couple minutes to scrape down sides of mixing bowl. Add eggs singly, beating in each one before adding the next.
- Mix in dry ingredients, beating only until incorporated. Add anise seeds, whiskey, and orange juice. A stiff, pie-crust–like dough is what you’re after. Add some or all of remaining flour, as needed, to get proper consistency.
- Spoon dough into cookie press, if you wish. Push out dough into shaped cookies onto cookie sheets. If you don’t have a cookie press or prefer to make them with cookie cutters, the dough can be rolled out ¼ inch thick on floured work surface and cut into favorite shapes, then arranged on cookie sheets. In either case, avoid handling the dough more than necessary.
- Bake cookies 12 to 15 minutes.
For the topping
- While cookies bake, stir together topping ingredients.
- Transfer cookies onto baking racks to cool.
- Gently roll cookies in topping mixture. If not eaten sooner, cookies will keep for a week.
*This article was first published in an online extra December 2013 issue of New Mexico Magazine