Pizzelles for Christmas!


One of my fondest memories of Christmas as a little girl was watching my Aunt Viola make pizzelles.  I remember the wonderful anise scent that filled the kitchen and the big iron that she used to make them.  I loved the flower in the center of the cookie but most of all I loved to eat them!  When we moved across  the country, I eagerly awaited the Christmas package from Auntie and Uncle as there was always a tin filled with pizzelles!

This year, while I went through my cookie file, I came across the recipe she sent me.  I would know the handwriting anywhere.  She sent me letters when we moved from Pennsylvania and when I grew up, the occasional recipe would be tucked inside.  The recipe for pizzelles I have treasured for many years.  

As I read through the recipe I realized that using seven cups of flour and a dozen eggs was going to yield many more pizzelles than could ever be eaten at our house, so I went searching for a new recipe.  I found one that was more reasonable for us.  Martha Stewart included a recipe in her cookbook, Cookie Perfection. I found the flavors were a bit different from my Aunt's but I can play with that next year.  This was a trial run and there was no disappointment!  

adapted from Cookie Perfection, Martha Stewart

Yield:  20 cookies

1 1/4 tsp anise seeds, toasted and finely ground
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp coarse salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp anise extract
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Confectioners' sugar, sifted, optional topping

Heat nonstick pizzelle iron.
In a small skillet, toast anise seeds over high heat, stirring, until fragrant.  Cool seeds, then grind until finely ground.  Whisk the ground seeds with the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and granulated sugar until well combined.  Whisk in the vanilla and anise extracts.  Slowly add the melted butter.  Whisk continuously as it is added, until smooth.  Stir in the flour mixture until just combined.  (Do not over-mix.)  

Using a tablespoon or pastry bag, place batter around the center of each pattern on the iron.  Close and seal with clasp.  Cook until golden brown about 45 seconds.

Using a small spatula, release and remove the cookies.  Using kitchen shears, trim the rough edges.

Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.  They may be stored for two weeks.

Making Pizzelles was special.  It was exciting to revive this Christmas tradition.


  1. Good to hear from you and Merry Christmas. I haven't had these in many years but always enjoyed them, they look very good.


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