Spanish Anise Cookies

These crisp cookies are strongly flavored with fennel seeds and licorice flavored liqueur.

Recipe adapted from Rustica.

Note: In my opinion, these cookies taste best when allowed to rest overnight.

Spanish Anise Cookies

About This Recipe

Yield:makes about 2 dozen cookies
Active time:20 minutes
Total time:35 minutes, plus allowing the cookies to rest overnight
This recipe appears in: Cookie Monster: Spanish Anise Cookies


  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • zest of one medium orange
  • 3 tablespoons anise liqueur, such as Sambuca
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten


  1. 1

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

  2. 2

    Heat olive oil in a small saute pan over medium high heat. Add fennel seeds and saute just until fragrant, 30 seconds.

  3. 3

    In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Pour olive oil over mixture, stirring until well combined.

  4. 4

    Add orange zest and liqueur, mixing until dough comes together. This may require a little water, so add a teaspoon at a time if necessary.

  5. 5

    Lightly flour a clean work surface. Divide dough in two. Form one half of dough into a 1 inch log. Cut 1/8 inch circles from dough, placing cookies on the baking sheet. Repeat with second log of dough.

  6. 6

    Brush each cookie with egg, then sprinkle with sugar. Bake cookies until golden and crisp, about 15 minutes.

  7. 7

    Let cookies cool, then store in an airtight container. Let rest overnight.

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