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Angelettis

This recipe is courtesy of Gerry DiSanto.

  • Yield: Makes about 6 dozen
Angelettis

Ingredients

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or anise extract
  • 1 box (16 ounces) confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • Coarse sanding sugar, for decorating

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. On medium speed, add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla; beat until incorporated. With mixer on, gradually add flour mixture; beat until dough comes together.

  3. Scoop dough into tablespoon-size balls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or a nonstick baking mat. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

  4. Meanwhile, stir together confectioners' sugar, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons water. Place wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Once cookies have cooled, top with icing. Sprinkle with sugar, and let stand until icing is firm.

Reviews (43)

  • scouterlea 27 Nov, 2011

    tried this for the first time and we love them. will add a bit more anise the next time. Delicious!!

  • scouterlea 27 Nov, 2011

    tried this for the first time and we love them. will add a bit more anise the next time. Delicious!!

  • Toadcottage 30 Aug, 2011

    It seems that everyone who doesn't like these cookies didn't use the anise. These are Italian cookies! This is one of my families favorite cookie. I add orange blossom water to the batter as well as the anise. They bake up as perfect little cakes. I then put on the lemon frosting using no water to make it thick. Add sprinkles for the season, and perfect little cakes you can freeze!

  • MBcook 24 Dec, 2010

    I would not make these again. The dough was very sticky, the cookies were bumpy in shape and I ended up smoothing them out with wet fingers before baking. The cookies taste fine, but a bit dry similar to a biscuit. The icing was too thin and did not add much to the cookies and the color from the sprinkles ran and smeared in the icing. If you plan to make these cookies, I recommend you use the anise extract (I did not) and try a few layers of the icing or using a thicker frosting.

  • countrymom56 12 Dec, 2010

    I made this cookies last year for my whole family, and they all loved them, They are very delicious, very light and fluffy and very festive too.

  • livsmum 21 Oct, 2010

    I made these cookies last year on a whim and I loved them. Now it's not even halloween and I'm craving them. They are not too sweet ; if you like plain cookies, then you'll like these!

  • livsmum 21 Oct, 2010

    I made these cookies last year on a whim and I loved them. Now it's not even halloween and I'm craving them. They are not too sweet ; if you like plain cookies, then you'll like these!

  • GingerbreadMom54 21 Dec, 2009

    These cookies were wonderful! Light, fluffy and delicious. The lemon icing added a nice touch and gave the cookie a bit more flavor. I loved them and would definitely make them again!

  • wilkermom 7 Dec, 2009

    I was not real impressed with these cookies. They were kind of bland. I used the Anise Extract and you could taste the flavor, but it was just a bland cookie. I probably would not make these again.

  • nanopia 26 Feb, 2009

    I had high hopes about this recipe but it just didn't win me over. It seemed to be a lot of work for a pretty plain cookie. I didn't try using the anise, which is annoying since it give it as an option. I think with the anise it may have been better or at least NOT forgettable.

  • nanopia 26 Feb, 2009

    I had high hopes about this recipe but it just didn't win me over. It seemed to be a lot of work for a pretty plain cookie. I didn't try using the anise, which is annoying since it give it as an option. I think with the anise it may have been better or at least NOT forgettable.

  • anitarn 3 Jan, 2009

    These cookies are traditional Italian cookies. They are wonderful. However, every Italian I know, Including my mom, calls them ANGINETTI

  • anitarn 3 Jan, 2009

    These cookies are traditional Italian cookies. They are wonderful. However, every Italian I know, Including my mom, calls them ANGINETTI

  • caroldirner 29 Dec, 2008

    I used anise extract in the cookies, together with 2 tsp. anise seed. I also used anise extract and lemon juice in the icing. These were delicious!

  • kitkath 28 Dec, 2008

    I made these and halved the recipe and used lemon in the icing and that is what they use in italian bakeries.........good cookies.

  • julialovesmartha 26 Dec, 2008

    This was my first time using this recipe.
    I used the peppermint extract and water combo instead of the lemon juice.
    The icing was fabulous and the cookies themselves came out fantastically.
    I used a meat tenderizer to smash a peppermint stick and used the crushed candies and tiny pink colours --the cookies looked and tasted fantastic. I used anisse seed--and it was my first time using this extract. I feared it would be way too overpowering but it wasn't!

  • Iness 26 Dec, 2008

    I love it! My cookie were rounded in shape. Love the icing.

  • lucor 23 Dec, 2008

    too dry

  • Nvrhom13 22 Dec, 2008

    I made these this week. You are right the dough is sticky, but it worked. My only complaint is that there was not enough anise extract. The next time I will use at least 2 Tablespoons. I also used the anise extract in the frosting. They are a good cookie.

  • Nvrhom13 22 Dec, 2008

    I made these this week. You are right the dough is sticky, but it worked. My only complaint is that there was not enough anise extract. The next time I will use at least 2 Tablespoons. I also used the anise extract in the frosting. They are a good cookie.

  • Nvrhom13 22 Dec, 2008

    I made these this week. You are right the dough is sticky, but it worked. My only complaint is that there was not enough anise extract. The next time I will use at least 2 Tablespoons. I also used the anise extract in the frosting. They are a good cookie.

  • Nvrhom13 22 Dec, 2008

    I made these this week. You are right the dough is sticky, but it worked. My only complaint is that there was not enough anise extract. The next time I will use at least 2 Tablespoons. I also used the anise extract in the frosting. They are a good cookie.

  • Nvrhom13 22 Dec, 2008

    I made these this week. You are right the dough is sticky, but it worked. My only complaint is that there was not enough anise extract. The next time I will use at least 2 Tablespoons. I also used the anise extract in the frosting. They are a good cookie.

  • Nvrhom13 22 Dec, 2008

    I made these this week. You are right the dough is sticky, but it worked. My only complaint is that there was not enough anise extract. The next time I will use at least 2 Tablespoons. I also used the anise extract in the frosting. They are a good cookie.

  • abbie10 21 Dec, 2008

    I made these cookies and they turned out pretty good....but they dough was very sticky to work with.....anybody know what I may have done wrong......

  • crawpl3 20 Dec, 2008

    I made these delicious cake-like cookies with anise extract, and then made the icing with water instead of lemon juice, plus 1 1/2 tsp. peppermint extract. I then topped them with crushed peppermint candies, which just put the over the top. Festive, gorgeous, and delicious. What more can you ask for?

  • coffeeworker 19 Dec, 2008

    I have made these cookies for years. I never knew the name of them. They are great for Easter also. The kids like them because they are fun to play with. You really cannot mess them up.

  • joao_dasilva 18 Dec, 2008

    For Lori63: Regular Italian anise (seed, and not star anise) is fab! It's one of those magical ingredients that gives a special grace note to cookies. It's light and perfumy, much more refined than licorice. Butter is generally about 80 - 87% fat ( the rest milk solids ) while Crisco is 100% fat, so I think you'd get a slightly different texture, but not in a bad way at all. I love Italian and Greek holiday cookies; 'll be doing these with superfine sugar and anise seed.

  • joao_dasilva 18 Dec, 2008

    For Lori63: Regular Italian anise (seed, and not star anise) is fab! It's one of those magical ingredients that gives a special grace note to cookies. It's light and perfumy, much more refined than licorice. Butter is generally about 80 - 87% fat ( the rest milk solids ) while Crisco is 100% fat, so I think you'd get a slightly different texture, but not in a bad way at all. I love Italian and Greek holiday cookies; 'll be doing these with superfine sugar and anise seed.

  • Lori63 18 Dec, 2008

    Can someone tell me what anise tastes like? Is it black licorice? Also, does anyone have good/bad results using butter flavor crisco instead of butter?

  • All_Bright 18 Dec, 2008

    Made these for a cookie exchange at work to RAVE REVIEWS.
    One alteration I made to the topping: Cream 1/2 cup butter, add 4 1/2 cups poweded sugar (sifted), 3 tbsp milk, 1/2 tsp (or a bit more to taste) vanilla and blend until smooth. (You can also use 1/2 tsp peppermint extract or other flavoring instead of vanilla.) Frost HEAVILY and add crushed peppermint, or sanding sugar. Pop into the fridge until the frosting is firm. YUMMY!!!

  • nuxmaniac 18 Dec, 2008

    Are these the melt in your mouth shortbread cookie? Looks like it based on the receipe but just want to make sure....

  • nuxmaniac 18 Dec, 2008

    Are these the melt in your mouth shortbread cookie? Looks like it based on the receipe but just want to make sure....

  • yelnet810 18 Dec, 2008

    One of my mother-in-law's elderly friends makes these every year. I have been trying to get the exact recipe from her for years but she would only give me the ingredients not the measurements! I finally have it!!! We would keep a box of these in the freezer and whenever we wanted one, would just take it out, let it defrost for about 10-15 minutes and then enjoy. She would make hers as twists, not balls. Thank you Martha!!!

  • Renee5775 18 Dec, 2008

    My Italian grandmother made these cookies for decades, allthough she called them Biscotti Fascile and she always colored the icing pink, green and blue. No matter how many times anyone in our family makes them, they still don't compare to Grandma's. Oh, and yes you can either freeze the dough or make the cookies and freeze them.

  • mammag 18 Dec, 2008

    this is for Sharma 26 - I freeze all my cookie balls ahead of time and then bake them as needed - I have even baked them from frozen (a little extra time). I do lots of holiday trays and usually spend one whole day just baking as the cookie balls are in the freezer - also freeze unbaked cut out cookies and they bake beautifully Hope this helps

  • Catherinen 18 Dec, 2008

    To make these cookies a true Italian traditional Christmas cookie, I add a little anise flavoring to the frosting. Great with a cup of espresso.

  • sharma26 13 Dec, 2008

    Can I freeze this dough? I need to make a cookie platter in a week, but I won't have time to make so many different types of dough the day before! Freezing several types of dough will make it a lot easier to bake after work the night before.

  • sbirdsell 11 Dec, 2008

    Fabulous!! So light. Pack well without breaking for lunches, great with a cup of tea. Definitly will make again, not just for Chirstmas.

  • cc94115 2 Dec, 2008

    These are very good. They are cakey, domey, and not too sweet. I recommend a generous coating of icing...even so, the flavor is subtle. I used vanilla extract, and put 2 tsp instead of 1. Good. The cookie part has a good mild taste that is neutral enough to flavor the icing something other lemon. Would make these again.

  • Joobee 30 Nov, 2008

    I have a recipe for these wonderful cookies, but you have to make
    about 10 dozen at one time! This recipe is very good and makes
    enough to enjoy

  • dorian 13 Dec, 2007

    Wonderful!!! I made these cookies exactly as specified and they turned out beautiful!!! I squeezed fresh lemon (from our tree) into the icing and the flavor combined with the anise in the cookie is amazing! I sprinkled BLUE sugar over icing (instead of red) and they looked liked little snowballs. Cookies are better in 2-3 days for flavors to come alive!!! Very good recipe! Happy Holidays!!!

  • danadoodlebug 8 Nov, 2007

    The day this episode aired, I nearly fell out of my seat... I watched in awe as Martha and Gerry DiSanto went over the recipe. When I was a little girl, my mother made these cookies every year for Christmas and they were, and still are my favorite cookie of all time. My mom passed away, leaving behind remarkable holiday memories and no recipes!!!! Thank goodness for Martha...you made my holidays feel like home again!!!

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