This is a very popular cookie recipe in Rome. It’s also one of the easiest, requiring only four ingredients. While I prefer being more exact with my measurements, this is one of the very few exceptions where quantities are usually given in “bicchieri”, glasses, so I’ll stick to tradition. Go by ratio, use any cup you have in your home, but for today I’ll be using a standard measuring cup.
½ cup of white wine or red wine (125 g)
½ cup extra virgin olive oil (103 g)
½ cup sugar or (103 g)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon of aniseeds (optional but very traditional)
All purpose flour till proper consistency, approximately 700-750 g
Granulated sugar for rolling in
- Combine all the ingredients adding the flour till you get the consistency of short pastry
- Cover and let rest for about 10 minutes
- Roll into approximately ⅓ inch in diameter. The skinnier they are, the faster they will crisp. You will not need to dust the working table with flour, as it will make it difficult to roll your dough. Slice into smaller pieces and shape into something that resembles a donut or bagel.
- Then dip both sides in granulated sugar and place on a baking tray layered with parchment paper. Place in a preheated oven at 300℉ for approximately 25 minutes. Break one cookie and check if it’s fully crisp. If more cooking is necessary, lower to 200℉ and keep there to crisp, being careful not to over brown them.
- Remove and allow to cool. They keep for weeks in an airtight container.
These are maybe one of my most loved cookie recipes that pairs greatly with wine if you can’t tell already. It’s the perfect after dinner small sweet bite that you can’t stop eating.
Adding aniseeds in the dough is very traditional and you might like it even though, like me, you don’t like anise flavored liqueurs. It’s common also to substitute red wine for white wine and add walnuts.
I often divide the dough into 4-5 pieces, roughly shape into logs and let rest covered. This will allow the gluten in the dough to relax and make rolling easier. If you find yourself fighting with a log that stretches back then cover it and let it rest for 5-10 minutes.
Quantities in this recipe will yield about 4 half sheet pans of cookies. As a start, I’d recommend a smaller quantity. Use an espresso cup as “bicchiere”.