Before you begin this recipe, you must know right from the start that these are not traditional biscochitos, but they are from my mom, whose recipes should never, ever be questioned. The traditional verison would be made with lard and red wine and these are not. Feel free, however, to drink as much red wine as you'd like while baking them. I think this somehow makes up for it. And let's face it-the wine is much better going in your mouth then in the cookies.
Ingredients (or, as Teresa Giudice from the Real Housewives of NJ would say, "Ingredients-es")
1 cup softened butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg (room temperature...always room temperature. If you are like me and can't think far enough ahead to take your eggs out early, simply plop it in some warm water for a few minutes.)
3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp anise seed
3 tbl vanilla (or as Ina Garten would say, "The GOOD vanilla.")
1/2 cup sugar and 2 tbl cinnamon mixed together..voila! Cinnamon Sugar!
Cream together butter and sugar until very creamy. Add egg and continue to beat until a lovely yellow. Add anise and vanilla and mix just until incorporated.
In a separate bowl, mix together the flour and baking powder. Slowly add to butter mixture but do not overwork the dough-it will get stressed out and result in tough, unhappy cookies, much the same way the author of this recipe becomes when overworked. Roll dough out on floured surface to about 1/4" thickness and cut out with your favorite cutters. I use round, because I lack imagination.
Bake in a 350 oven for 7-8 minutes or until very lightly browned on bottom. Remove from baking sheet and toss in cinnamon sugar while still warm until completely coated and then place on rack to cool.
(Note: If you remove the cookies from the oven and forget to roll them in the cinnamon sugar, and instead do a load of wash or empty the dishwasher or sign onto Facebook and accidentally allow your cookies to cool, you'll find the sugar won't stick and you'll be left with only somewhat sugared cookies. Not wanting to mix that batch in with the others you might be forced to eat it, reasoning that they weren't good anyway and then the rest of the night you'll feel guilty about the 12 cookies you ate in one sitting. And then you'll end up drinking more wine to forget that you just downed a dozen cookies and you'll probably pass out on the couch in a red wine/biscochito coma. Trust me on this. xoxo)