READY IN: 4hrs 10mins




  • Put the flour, 3/4 cup of the sugar, the baking powder, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the anise in a large bowl and whisk to blend.
  • In a small bowl, cut the butter into pea-sized pieces.
  • Using a pastry blender or your fingertips, work the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse meal.
  • Add the egg yolk, vanilla, and ice water and mix with your fingers just until the dough comes together into a ball.
  • Working on a lightly floured surface, take egg-sized pieces of the dough and smear them away from you with the heel of your hand into 6-inch streaks. (This step helps to achieve the layered texture of the authentic cookie without using lard).
  • Scrape up all the streaks of dough and pile them on top of one another to form a disk.
  • Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  • On a portable (this will be refrigerated again), lightly floured surface, roll the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch.
  • Refrigerate for 30 miutes, or until firm.
  • Set a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 375°F.
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or use a non-stick cookie sheet.
  • With a cookie cutter, cut out 2 1/2-inch circles (I use stars), and place them on the cookie sheets about 2-inches apart.
  • Chill the cookies 10 minutes before baking.
  • Reroll the scraps of dough and cut out more cookies, chilling before baking.
  • Meanwhile, mix the remaining 1 Tablespoon ground anise and 2 Tablespoon sugar together in a small bowl.
  • Sprinkle a thin layer of the sugar mixture over the cookies.
  • Bake for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned around the edges.
  • Cool on the pan on a wire rack.
  • May be store at room temperature, well-wrapped, for up to 5 days.