Mary Ann's Blog

Ciao Italia Virtual Cookie Exchange

Ciao Italia Virtual Cookie Exchange

You are invited to Ciao Italia's Virtual Cookie Exchange!

Since we all can't be together in person to swap cookies, I thought having a virtual cookie recipe swap would be the next best thing. You can post your own favorite recipe below, then everyone else can choose to make them and add the recipe to their recipe box. It's a great way to say Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. I can't wait to see what you will send in!

How to Share

Use the comment form below to leave your recipe on this page.

Follow the format that I use below:

  1. Include a short introduction to tell us a little bit about why it is your favorite recipe.
  2. Type the name of your recipe in capital letters and tell us how many cookies your recipe makes.
  3. List the ingredients and write out the directions.

My Recipe

Fig-filled cookies are an absolute must to make and give for Christmas. They are a Sicilian tradition and one of my most cherished heirloom cookies from home. My mother gave this heavy fruit-laden cookie that reminded me of Fig Newtons. to all those on her Christmas cookie list and I have continued the tradition. You are on my list so I am sending them your way. Hope you enjoy them and don't forget to share!

Sicilian Fig Cookies

Makes 4 dozen

4 cups King Arthur Unbleached, All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup vegetable shortening
1 large egg
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/2 cup milk

2 cups dried figs soaked in water
14 medjool dates, pitted
3/4 cup  raisins
1/2 cup honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup orange marmalade
2/3 cup walnuts or almonds, coarsely chopped
1 large egg white beaten with 1 tablespoon water for egg wash
Colored sprinkles

Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together into a large bowl. Add the sugar and stir well. Cut in the shortening with a fork and work the mixture until it looks like corn meal. In a bowl, beat the egg, vanilla, and milk together. Add to the flour mixture and work the mixture with your hands into a rough dough.

Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead for 5 minutes, or until smooth. The dough will be soft. Cut the dough into 4 pieces, wrap each piece in plastic wrap, and chill for 45 minutes.

To make the filling, grind the figs, dates, and raisins in a meat grinder or in a food processor until coarse; or coarsely chop by hand. Place the mixture in a bowl, add all the remaining filling ingredients, and mix well. The mixture will be thick. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Divide dough into quarters and Wwork with 1 piece of dough at a time, keeping the remaining dough covered. On a floured surface, roll out each piece of dough to a 12-inch square. Cut the dough into 4-X-3-inch rectangles, and spoon 2 tablespoons of the filling mixture down the center of each rectangle. Carefully fold over the long sides of each rectangle to meet in the center, then pinch the seam to close it securely, and turn the cookie seam side down. Pinch the ends closed and fold the ends under. Shape the cookies into crescents and place seam side down on the cookie sheets. Make 2 or 3 diagonal slits in the top of each crescent with scissors. Brush with the egg wash and sprinkle with colored sprinkles. (Or eliminate egg wash and make a confectioners glaze; when the cookies are still warm, drizzle the glaze over them and sprinkle with the sugar)

Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer to wire racks to cool.

Note: wrap the crescents individually in plastic wrap, twist the ends, and tie them with ribbons. They make wonderful Christmas presents. They can be made ahead and frozen.


  1. Sheila's avatar


    What a fun idea, Mary Ann :) I have to look for a good cookie recipe now.
  2. Peter Leva's avatar

    Peter Leva

    This is a quick, easy and delious cookie. Great for cookie swaps or just to enjoy with a cup of tea or a glass of milk!


    Yield: aprox 36

    3 sticks butter – softened
    ¾ cup 10x sugar – powdered sugar
    1 TBLS vanilla
    ½ teas salt
    1 bag – 12 oz. mini chips

    Combine all ingredients. Roll into small balls – aprox. 1 Tablespoon size. Place on cookie sheet – they can be placed close together as they do not spread. Bake in pre-heated 350º oven for 10-12 minutes. Leave on tray and sprinkle with 10x or roll in 10x.
  3. Carol Lott's avatar

    Carol Lott

    I am not sure about the history of this recipe, but this was my mom’s specialty. Mom did not bake many things from scratch, but people always hoped that my mom would bring her little doughnuts to a party. Recently, a relative heard about another Italian Cookie called Anginettes. I found a copy of the recipe and made the cookies. They were very similar to this cookie, so maybe the name of the recipe became lost when people shared it.

    Little Doughnuts

    6 eggs
    1 cup sugar
    1 cup melted Crisco
    2 tsp. vanilla
    4 cups flour
    6 tsp. baking powder
    ½ tsp. salt

    Beat eggs. Add sugar, Crisco and vanilla. Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add enough flour so the dough sticks together. Shape into small doughnuts about an inch in diameter.

    2 cups confectioners’ sugar
    4 tbsp. Milk
    1 tsp. vanilla

    Combine and coat warm cookies with the glaze. You can also decorate with multicolored jimmies.
  4. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Thank you Carol, Peter and Sheila for responding so quickly! I am going to make your chocolate chip snowballs and donuts! Two of my family's favorites!
  5. Sally Miera Heiner's avatar

    Sally Miera Heiner

    Sunshine Bites - Gluten Free

    2 1/2 C gluten free flour mix (or 1 1/2 c rice flour 1/2 c corn flour 1/2 c potatoe flour)
    1 1/2 C butter (no subsitute)
    2/3 c powdered sugar
    2 T lemon juice
    2 t grated lemon peel

    1 C sifted powdered sugar
    1 C butter
    1 t grated lemon peel
  6. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Thank you Sally for the gluten free recipe! That is invaluable to those who are gluten intolerant or have celiac disease. A great gift for those who love cookies! Mary Ann
  7. Angela Volta's avatar

    Angela Volta

    One time we attended a Portuguese celebration and I wanted to cook something Portuguese to share at the celebration. My husband’s family is Portuguese so I was very excited! Rabanadas were explained to me quickly – in reality they are a French toast breakfast food. I missed part of the translation and made Rabanadas into bite size treats – after a bit of laughter everyone welcomed our new tradition to their celebration! We now make this every Christmas Eve to enjoy with our family!

    Makes one large platter, about 40 treats

    Vegetable oil
    1 loaf day old French bread
    4 green tea bags
    1 cup sugar
    ¼ cup cinnamon

    Heat vegetable oil to to fry in large pot or deep fryer.

    Boil water and add tea bags. Let cool for 5 min.

    While oil heating and tea cooling; slice bread in slices about 1 inch, then half, then quarter into bite size.

    Mix sugar and cinnamon in large bowl.

    Carefully and quickly dip bread into tea and gently squeezing out excess tea. Working with about 6 pieces at a time.

    Add 6 pieces carefully to hot oil.

    Fry for 3 -5 min or so until golden brown.

    Remove with strainer spoon and immediately toss while warm into sugar and cinnamon mixture.

    Enjoy Rabanadas!

    Note: Do not tightly cover completed Rabanadas – air is needed to keep crisp.
  8. cynthia's avatar


    Italian Seed Cookies

    half of recipe whole recipe
    2 1/2 lbs flour 5 lbs flour
    4 1/2 teasp baking powder 9 level teasp baking powder
    1 1/2 lbs sugar 3 lbs sugar
    1 lb crisco 2 lbs crisco
    3 eggs 5 eggs
    1/2 oz vanilla 1 oz vanilla extract
    3 oz water 3/4 cup water

    2 lbs seseme seeds - Can get these from Central Grocery on Decator St. in French Quarter. I got mine from health food store.

    Mix all in large bowl by hand. If too dry, add a little more crisco.

    Take small amounts like the size of a baseball and knead until smooth. When all dough kneaded, keep in pot with cover. Take small amount at a time (like the size of a golf ball). Place seeds on table about a foot in front of you. Roll dough to size of little finger. Roll it in the seeds until covered with seeds. Cut to 1 or 1 1/2 inch pieces. Place on greased pan or cookie sheet about an inch apart. Bake in 350 degree oven on top shelf for 10 minutes, then on middle shelf for another 10 minutes until golden brown. Makes about 10 to 12 lbs of cookies.

    NOTE: To coat cookies the easy way-Brush with milk then in seeds after cutting in desired lenghts.

    My oven worked best at 400 degrees.
  9. luisa's avatar


    Jelly Cookies,these are a family favorite, not too sweet, but buttery and so festive, always on our Christmas table

    With electric mixer cream together

    1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
    1 egg yolk
    then add:
    1 cup flour
    1/3 cup powdered sugar, sifted
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 teaspoon orange extract (or you can use lemon or almond

    use one scant tablespoon of dough, form into balls, place on parchemnt lined sheet, press an indentation in center with your floured thumb. Fill with jelly or preserves

    bake 325 10 to 14 minutes

  10. Kim's avatar


    This is my very favorite cookie recipe and I always baked a double batch at Christmas. It's from the 1968 edition of the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. I rewrote it so that the ingredients were listed at the top for quick reference. (And no, the "newer" editions just aren't as good!)

    Chocolate Crinkles

    1/2 cup shortening
    1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 eggs
    2 (1 oz.) squares unsweetened chocolate, melted
    2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/3 cup milk
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts
    confectioner's sugar

    Thoroughly cream 1/2 cup shortening, 1 2/3 cups granulated sugar, and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Beat in 2 eggs, then two 1-ounce squares unsweetened chocolate, melted.

    Sift together 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; add alternately with 1/3 cup milk. Add 1/2 cup chopped walnuts.

    Chill 3 hours. Form in 1-inch balls; roll in confectioner's sugar. Place on greased cookie sheet 2 to 3 inches apart. Bake in moderate oven (350 degrees) for 15 minutes. Cool slightly; remove from pan. Makes 48.

  11. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Thank you, Kim, Luisa, Angela, Cynthia, and Ruth. These all sound so delicious and different. I will be baking all weekend!
  12. Anne Molinari's avatar

    Anne Molinari

    2 cups Nutella
    1-1/2c. finely chopped roasted hazelnuts
    grated almond paste to cover mixture
    2 oz. brandy or cognac
    Pizzelle cookies (homemade)

    One day before making cookies:
    Combine nutella, nuts and cover with grated almond paste. Add cognac or brandy. Mixture will become very stiff. Shape into small logs the size of your baby finger. Prepare batter for pizzelle**. Bake cookies, and while still warm roll around prepared logs and place seam side down to cool. Makes approximately 5 dozen depending on size of pizzelle. **I used orange flavoring instead of the traditional anise.
  13. Karen Boehme's avatar

    Karen Boehme

    These wonderfully soft cut outs were given to me by a best friend's mother. They are soft and puffy if not rolled too thin. We made them many times and when the frosting is on them, they are irresistable. The dough is a dream to roll out and cut and makes baking them a great experience. The lady who passed it to me was an excellent baker and a better friend. The plate always comes home empty! I renamed them the 'Empty Plate Cookies".


    1/2 cup buttermilk
    1 cup butter, softened
    2 eggs
    5 cups flour
    1 1/2 cups sugar
    1 tsp. baking soda
    2 tsps baking powder
    1 tsp vanilla

    Combine butter and sugar and beat smooth. Add eggs and vanilla. Stir in the buttermilk then the flour and other dry ingredients.
    Chill dough about 2 hours or overnight.
    separate dough into 3 or 4 balls and roll one out on a floured board. For a nice puffy cookie do not roll thin, I go to usually 1/4 to 1/2 inch depending on how puffy I want them.

    Grease or spray the cookie sheets.
    Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes, till set but not brown. Cool completely.


    1 pound powdered sugar
    1 cup crisco
    1 tblsp flour
    dash of salt
    1/4 cup milk
    1 tsp. vanilla
    1 tblsp butter
    1/4 tsp cream of tartar

    I put everything into a large bowl and set the mixer on medium speed. Scrape bowl after a minute and let the mixer beat the frosting for 6 to 8 minutes. You may color or flavor the frosting however you like.

    They may be decorated any way you prefer also.
    They keep and freeze well.

    It makes lots of cookies but it depends on what size and shape cutters you use.
  14. Lorraine Fina Stevenski's avatar

    Lorraine Fina Stevenski

    Italian Rugelach Cookies Stuffed with Nutella and Chocolate Chips
    36 cookies

    Being from an Italian American family, my cooking and baking usually sway towards the Italian side. I am a self-taught baker and can tackle just about any baking recipe I find. Also being from New York where ethnic recipes rule, I have learned to cook and bake most all the types of culinary regions of the world that emigrated to New York. That is a lot of diversity. That is also a lot of good food coming from my kitchen But who said you have to keep the recipes intact and as written? Last Christmas while baking my traditional cookies, I just had to think of a new and interesting cookie for my recipe collection. This unique Rugelach recipe gets a bit Italian with the addition of Mascarpone cheese and creamy hazelnut Nutella. This monumental breach in the ethnicity of the Rugelach cookie brings a new dimension to the classic Jewish cookie. The mascarpone cheese makes a very buttery and flaky pastry that is so very matter what your ethnic persuasion.

    2 3/4 Cups All-purpose Flour, plus more for shaping
    1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
    1/2 Teaspoon Salt
    1 Cup Unsalted Butter, 2 sticks, cold, cut into 16 pieces
    8 Ounces Mascarpone Cheese, 1 tub, cold
    1 Tablespoon Vanilla Sugar
    2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
    1/4 Cup Nutella
    1/2 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips
    1 Large Egg
    1/4 Cup Vanilla Sugar

    HOW TO:
    COOKS NOTES: It is essential you work with this dough cold. Try not to handle the dough too much as your body heat will melt the dough and make it very difficult to handle. Keep your hands and baking tools lightly floured at all times. Plan on baking these cookies the day after you make the dough as they need time to rest and firm up in the refrigerator. Also a 1 hour rest in the refrigerator after forming these cookies will help keep the cookies shape and from spreading too much.

    1. MAKE THE COOKIE DOUGH: Add to the bowl of a large food processor the flour, sugar and salt. Pulse briefly just to blend the ingredients.
    2. Scatter the butter, mascarpone cheese, vanilla extract and vanilla sugar over the flour mixture. Pulse until the dough begins to come together in large clumps. Remove to a lightly floured surface and knead just until smooth.
    3. With a bench scraper, divide the dough into 4 pieces. Knead each into a ball and flatten into a round disk. Wrap each disk separately in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or preferably overnight.
    4. SHAPE & FILL THE COOKIES: Lightly flour a baking mat or counter surface. Working with one piece of dough at a time, roll the dough into a 12 inch circle using a floured rolling pin. Turn the dough over and lightly flour the surface again to keep from sticking. Cut the dough into 8 wedges using a pizza cutter. Using a small spatula, spread each wedge with a very thin coat of Nutella and then sprinkle with mini chocolate chips. Roll each into a crescent. Place on a tray, wrap lightly in plastic and refrigerate until firm; about 1 hour.
    5. TOP & BAKE THE COOKIES: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 4 large rimmed cookie sheets with parchment paper. Beat the egg in a small mixing bowl.
    6. Remove the cookies from the refrigerator. Arrange the cookies 9 to each cookie sheet. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the tops of the cookies with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with vanilla sugar. Bake 2 trays at a time, until golden brown and puffed; about 15-20 minutes. Let cool on the pan 15 minutes, transfer to a tray to cool completely before storage.

    from Lorraine's Favorite Recipes
    Lorraine Fina Stevenski
  15. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Lorraine, these sound so delicious and different that I am going to make them this weekend; thanks for sharing! Mary Ann
  16. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Ann, who does not like Nutella. These sound wicked good!
    Thanks for sharing. Mary Ann
  17. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Karen, empty plate cookies have such a nice ring to them! And I love buttermilk in anything! Thanks for sharing
  18. Maritza Holowatz's avatar

    Maritza Holowatz

    Chocolate Chip Biscotti

    My family loves this cookie and I always give them as gifts to my sister-in-law on special occasions.

    2 cups all purpose flour
    1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
    1-teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/8-teaspoon salt
    ½ cup butter
    ½ cup brown sugar
    ½ cup granulated sugar
    1-teaspoon instant espresso powder
    2 eggs
    1 cup chopped walnuts
    1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

    In a bowl together with flour, baking powder and cinnamon and salt. Set aside
    In a larger bowl combine the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and espresso powder, using an electric mixer set on high speed beat until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each. Beat until light and fluffy, about 2 min. Reduce the speed to low.
    Adds walnuts, chocolate chips. Mix
    Add the flour mixture and mix until incorporated.
    Divide the dough in half
    Using lightly flour hand form a log 3 inches wide and ¾ inches high and place them on a buttered baking sheet.
    Bake until firm to the touch, about 25 min. at 325 degrees F
    Remove the logs from the oven and let them cooled slightly on the baking sheets.
    After cooling transfer to a cutting board and cut with a serrated knife into ½ slices and place them back on the baking sheets cut side down to bake until brown, about 10 min. turn over and bake for 10 more min until brown. Remove from the oven transfer to wire rack until cool.
    Store in an air tight container for 2 weeks.
  19. Autumn Gentile Brachna's avatar

    Autumn Gentile Brachna

    My Italian side of the family looks forward to these cookies from me at every family event! They love them! There are never any leftovers because whatever's left on the plate, goes home with the relatives in doggie bags!

    Makes 40-48 large, or 100 small cookies.


    1/2 lb. unsalted sweet butter, melted
    3 eggs
    1 cup sugar
    pinch of salt
    2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
    1/2 tsp. baking soda
    1 Tbs. vanilla
    1/2 cup sour cream
    5 cups flour

    Combine egg and sugar, add melted butter. Add vanilla. Mix in first 2 cups flour along with salt, powder and soda, alternating with sour cream. Add rest of flour and work with hands. If sticky, refrigerate for a short time. Shape cookies into circles, twists and/or cigar shapes. Bake at 350^ for 15 minutes. Frost with powdered sugar icing when cool. Vary frosting colors according to the occasion or holiday.


    1 cup powdered sugar
    5 tsp. milk
    1/2 tsp. vanilla

    Mix until of a runny consistency. Brush over cookies. Sprinkle with decorations, if desired.
  20. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Maritza and Autumn, thanks for sharing these wonderful recipes with us! They are on my list for baking this weekend!

    Mary Ann
  21. Ruth E. Moore's avatar

    Ruth E. Moore


    YIELD – ABOUT 2 1/2 to 3 DOZEN

    These are wonderful cookies whenever! For casual occasions, I toss the nuts and chocolate minichips into the batter. For Christmas and more festive occasions, I make the frosting and as soon as I frost a cookie, I dip the frosted top into a small bowl of finely chopped nuts – walnuts, almonds, pecans, etc. If I use chopped almonds, I substitute almond extract for the maple. If you hide them well, they will keep in a zip-lock bag or a tin with a tight-fitting cover.

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Sift together:
    1 1/2 cups flour
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon soda

    Beat until fluffy:
    1/2 cup butter
    1 egg
    1 egg yolk
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/8 teaspoon maple extract

    1/3 cup chocolate minichips
    1/3 cup chopped nuts – your choice

    Add dry ingredients to wet mixture. Mix well. Add nuts and chips if you will not be frosting the cookies.

    Drop teaspoon-size balls of dough one inch apart onto greased baking sheet. (If you thoroughly chill the dough, balls are easy to roll between palms of your hands. This will give you perfectly round cookies that look professionally prepared when frosted!)

    Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove to cooling racks immediately.

    Heat 2 squares of 1/3 cup of chocolate chips with 1/4 cup milk or cream and 1 tablespoon butter in the top of a simmering double boiler; stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar. If you have made more than a single batch of cookies, you may need to reheat the frosting to keep it soft and spreadable for all the cookies.

    This recipe may be doubled, tripled or quadrupled. If I’ve prepared more than a single batch of dough, I whip up a batch of meringues with the leftover egg whites and leave them to bake in the oven overnight. Pink with raspberry flavoring or green with mint flavoring, when preparing Christmas cookies!

    (This was originally a Pillsbury Bake-Off recipe that my mom made when I was a child more than 60 years ago. It’s one of the few recipes I pilfered from her recipe box!)
  22. Karen W. Johnston's avatar

    Karen W. Johnston

    My favorite cookie is Mary Anne's BASIC DOUGH#2 from her Baker's Dozen Cookie Special she did for PBS several years ago. This recipe can be anything you want it to be. I use almond flavoring and then dip the baked cookies in chocolate. YUM! There are 4 other variations with this recipe. I think they are still on the Ciao Italia website.


    Makes Approx. 2 dozen cookies


    1 stick unsalted butter
    1 egg
    3/4 cup sugar
    1 tsp. vanilla extract ( or your favorite flavor)
    1/2 tsp. baking powder
    1/4 tsp. salt
    1 and 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
    2 heaping tablespoons cocoa

    In a mixer work the butter and sugar until the butter is light colored and the mixture is creamy; stir in the vanilla.

    Combine the flour, salt and baking powder and gradually add to the butter mixture. (This dough is very soft)

    Divide the dough in half and remove 1/2 of dough to a sheet of waxed paper. Add the cocoa to the remaining dough in mixer and blend well. Remove the chocolate dough to waxed paper.

    With your hands, form each half into a disk. Cover with another sheet of waxed paper. Roll the dough into a an approximate 10 x 13 rectangle between the waxed paper sheets. Place the rolled out dough onto baking sheets and refrigerate for at least one hour.

    When you are ready to bake the cookies remove the dough from the refrigerator and cut each sheet of dough in half so there are two plain pieces and two chocolate pieces of dough.

    Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

    Use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes and place on baking sheets.

    Sprinkle with sugar and bake in pre-heated oven 12 - 15 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned.

    Cool on wire rack. When cooled, dip the cookies in melted chocolate and place on waxed paper until the chocolate has hardened.

    Store in an airtight container in a cool place.

    Makes about 2 dozen cookies. You will get more or less cookies depending on the size of the cutters you use.
  23. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Thank you Karen, I am so glad that recipe works for you and you are right, it is so versatile! Mary Ann
  24. Gene Longo's avatar

    Gene Longo

    Hi to All -
    I have a question - Mary Anne read your mother's sour cherry cookie and it reminds me of something my cousin's grandmother used to make - she would dry cherries outside under 2 screens and save them for Christmas. They were made with an Almond tasting filling - but in a loaf form, the pastry dough was sweet and tender, and she would make a hard white icing over the loaf and decorate with tiny silver balls. I have been looking for years for this recipe - do you think your cookies sound similar? Their grandmother was from Abruzzi region - they do not have the recipe anymore and I so want to duplicate it!
  25. Kathleen M Wall's avatar

    Kathleen M Wall

    24-30 cookies
    ½ cup oil (plus some for shaping the cookies)
    16 oz honey
    12 oz unsulphured molasses (lgt)
    ½ oz almond extract
    2 tangerine skins, washed and chopped fine
    6 cups flour
    1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
    ½ teaspoon salt
    Whole blanched almonds, 4 oz (approximate)

    In a large bowl, combine the liquid ingredients. Add the chopped tangerine skins. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the flour mixture to the liquid, blending thoroughly. The dough will be hard.
    Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to 24.
    To bake:
    Preheat oven to 350.
    Oil cookie sheet (12x15) or us the no-stick foil. This dough is very sticky.
    Set out a saucer of oil. Oil both hands and take about 2 Tablespoons of dough and roll into a rope about 6” long. Lay the rope in an S shape on the cookie sheet. Put 3 almonds on the cookie, one on each end and one in the middle. Six cookies will fit on a 12x15 sheet.
    Bake for 10 – 15 minutes - they should firm up but not brown. Remove from to a wire rack to cool immediately coming out of the oven.
    Makes 24-30 cookies. Store in an airtight container. Great for dunking – coffee or wine.
  26. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Kathleen, I love the sound of these cookies with the tangerine rind; I will definitely try these and thanks for sharing. Mary Ann
  27. Peter Leva's avatar

    Peter Leva

    In my haste, I inadvertenly omitted 3 cups of flour from my recipe. My apologies for any inconvienience. The following is the correct recipe.


    Yield: aprox 36

    3 sticks butter – softened
    ¾ cup 10x sugar – powdered sugar
    3 cups all purpose flour
    1 TBLS vanilla
    ½ teas salt
    1 bag – 12 oz. mini chips

    Combine all ingredients. Roll into small balls – aprox. 1 Tablespoon size. Place on cookie sheet – they can be placed close together as they do not spread. Bake in pre-heated 350º oven for 10-12 minutes. Leave on tray and sprinkle with 10x or roll in 10x.
  28. Gene Longo's avatar

    Gene Longo

    Grandma Galterio's Sesame Seed Cookies
    While going through my mother's recipes - I found 3 different sesame seed cookies that were my Grandma's. Of course - the third recipe I tried - were the ones I remembered. I hope you enjoy these as much as my family does!
    (note - I only make a half recipe which makes a nice tin of cookies - below is a full recipe)

    4-5 cups of flour
    2 cups of sugar
    1 lb butter
    3 tbsp. baking powder
    6 egg yolks
    3 tbsp. of real vanilla
    1/4 cup of milk
    1 - 1.5 cups of Sesame Seeds
    Cream butter and sugar well. Add egg yolks and vanilla. Add flour slowing until incoporated (I do mine in the mixer). when dough is firm keep covered in plastic wrap, break small pieces the size of a walnut. have two saucers - one with sesame seeds, the other with milk. roll dough in milk, shake, then roll into the sesame seeds. place of baking sheet (I use parchment paper). Bake 12-15 minutes at 350 degrees until golden brown. Careful not to over cook.
  29. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Gene, this sounds so wonderful; my mother;s cookies would have the approximate flavors you describe; thanks for sharing. And though yours are made in a loaf shape, I think the texture would be about the same for the round cookies. Mary Ann
  30. Gene Longo's avatar

    Gene Longo

    Victoria's Anis Christmas Cookies
    I loved these as a kid! The amazing thing is the bottom becomes cake like and the top meringue.

    4 eggs
    2 cups of sugar
    1/2 tea. of Anis Oil
    2 cups of flour
    Beat 4 eggs through
    Add 2 cups of sugar slowly with mixer
    1/2 tea Anis oil
    Beat for 20 minutes (yes 20 min!)
    Slowly add two cups of flour
    line baking sheets with parchment paper
    drop on parchment with a full teaspoon
    Let sit overnight in a cool safe place (yes overnight!)
    Bake at 350 for 10-15 min.
  31. Pina's avatar


    Hi Mary Ann,
    Perhaps you or your fans can help, I'm looking for a recipe my grandmother (we are from Sicily) used to make, we called them biscotti neri, and they were made with raisins and some kind of nuts and they were very dark...
  32. Pat's avatar


    Pignoli cookies have been a favorite of our family but we only got them at the Italian bakeries in NY. Well living in Cape Cod, these cookies are not readily available. This recipe was given to me by an Italian "Nonna".

    Pignoli cookies (makes 2 dz.)
    1 8 oz. can Almond Paste
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
    1/4 cup flour
    2 med. egg whites, lightly beaten
    8 oz. pine nuts, put in a bowl

    300 degree oven, prepare two cookie sheets w/parchment paper.
    In food processor, break up the paste into very small pieces and pulse w/the two sugars and flour. Once mixture is finely ground, start adding the egg whites a little at a time just until the dough comes together.
    Using a spoon & slightly wet hands, scoop small spoonful of dough and place into bowl of pignolis. Roll around just until lightly coated and place on prepared pans. Place 2" apart and make 20-25 minutes, then cool. Dust lightly with confectioner's sugar before serving.
  33. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Pina, it sounds like chocolate pepper cookies to me made with nuts, raisins, cocoa; you can find the recipe under MRS.Tegani's chocolate pepper cookies. Delicious. These were also called meatball cookies.
  34. Pina's avatar


    My sister has been wanting these cookies for so long, my grandmother used to make them and now I am trying to replicate for her. I will make them tomorrow night and will let you know.
    Thanks a million Mary Ann.
  35. Cynthia Marie Kinsella's avatar

    Cynthia Marie Kinsella

    I've made these little morsels twice now in the last few days. I've eaten my fair share and given out many to customers to try. They are addicting! Kind of remind me of biscotti, but not as hard to chew.

    Mocha Almond Chip Meringues

    2 egg whites - room temp
    1 Tbsp instant coffee granules or 1 1/2 tsp instant espresso coffee pwd
    1/8 tsp cream of tartar
    1/2 C sugar
    1 tsp vanilla
    1 C mini choc chips
    1/2 C toasted Almonds - finely chopped

    Beat egg whites at med. speed until foamy. Add coffee & crm of tartar...beat at med-hi 2-3 minutes until soft peaks form. With mixer running, beat in sugar 1 Tbsp at a time, then beat an add'l 5-6 minutes until stiff & glossy. Beat in vanilla. Fold in chips & nuts.

    Position oven racks - one in bottom thrid of oven & second one in top third of oven. Preheat oven to 225. Line 2 baking sheets (or stones) with parchment paper.

    Now drop heaping teaspoons of mixture close together but not touching on baking sheets. Makes approx 40-48. Bake for 90 minutes or until dry & firm. Turn off oven. Crack open door slightly & leave ajar to let meringues cook in oven 3-4 hrs. Store in an airtight container.

    Since I've been baking constantly, these were made last thing in the evening. So when I turned off the oven & cracked it open, they were in there for the rest of the night until I got up in the morning. Seemed none the worse for the wear. I stuck a ladel in the door to hold it open slightly.
  36. Cynthia M Kinsella's avatar

    Cynthia M Kinsella

    my friends I have a recipe and a request .The recipe comes from the aunt of a friend of mine She makes these cookies every year and while they are labour intensive they are So Good ,She calls Them Angelonis
    I have never heard of this name before Maybe one of you can offer another name for them .That is my Request , Here is the recipe

    Aunt Pat’s Italian cookies AKA Angelonis

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

    6 eggs, well beaten
    1 tsp. vanilla
    1 cup Crisco
    6 tsp. baking powder
    5 oz. can sweetened, condensed milk
    1 cup sugar
    5-6 cups flour (start w/5)

    Cream Crisco. Add sugar and beat well. Add eggs, vanilla and milk and beat well. Add baking powder to flour and add mixture to creamed, a little at a time. Dough should be just firm enough to roll into walnut-size balls without sticking to your hands. Bake at 375 for 10-15 mins., until cookies are just lightly browned. No need to grease cookie sheets.

    When cookies are cool, make a glaze of:

    2 cups confectioners sugar
    1 TBS butter, melted
    ¼ tsp. salt
    1 tsp. vanilla
    ¼ cup milk
    (coloring, if desired)

    Mix together to make a smooth paste. Dip tops of cookies, then smooth with a knife. Allow to harden before storing in airtight container
  37. mary Ann Esposito's avatar

    mary Ann Esposito

    Anginettes is the other name for this delicious cookie!
  38. Cataldo Alba's avatar

    Cataldo Alba

    I love this recipe because these were waiting for me on Christmas morning, along with a dozen other different kinds of cookies but these are my favorite.

    (Quantity is based on how big you roll the balls)

    6 Cups Flour
    2 Cups Sugar
    1 ½ Cups Cocoa (or more if you like it darker)
    1 Teaspoon Salt
    5 Tablespoons Baking Powder
    2 Tablespoons Cinnamon
    2 Tablespoons Ground Cloves
    2 Tablespoons Nutmeg
    ½ - 1 Tablespoon Black Pepper (depending on taste)

    1 Cup Crisco
    2 Eggs
    1 Teaspoon Vanilla

    2 Cups Milk
    2 Cups Raisins (soak in warm water to plump)
    1 Cup Walnuts (or more if you like)

    Mix all dry ingredients and sift. Put to the side..


    Cream together - Crisco, sugar, eggs and vanilla

    Start to add dry ingredients and alternate with the milk.. ( if it is too sticky don’t add all the milk)

    When you are almost all mixed add the raisins and mix through..

    Add extra cocoa if you like them darker..

    Roll into balls and bake at 350 for 8-12 minutes

    2 cups sifted powdered sugar
    2 tablespoons milk
    1 teaspoon anise extract
  39. Pat's avatar


    In your virtual cookie exchange many of the recipes, including yours for fig cookies, call for crisco. I am not a fan of Crisco. If I am going to use hydrogenated fat, I prefer something from a more natural source, like butter or oil, and not a product made of chemicals.

    Do you have a suggestion for substitutes? Would the recipes need other adjustments.

    Thank you. Love your recipes as did my mom. Still rave about your lentil/barley many lentil soups are just bland. I think fennel really bumped it up.
  40. Cynthia Kinsella's avatar

    Cynthia Kinsella

    Biscotti Pasta Mandorle - Almonds Biscuits

    250 g / 9 oz almond flour
    250 g / 9 oz sugar
    60 g / 2 ½ oz egg white
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    candied cherries
    Chop the sugar with the almonds as finely as possible.
    Aside lightly beat the egg white with a teaspoon of vanilla extract, then add it to the flour with the sugar.
    Place the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a star nozzle and form cookies on a tray covered with baking paper.
    Decorate cookies with candied cherries and let them rest for at least 12 hours.
    Then bake the cookies at 180 ° C / 360 ° F for 10 min.

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