Here’s a recipe for biscochitos, a holiday cookie popular in New Mexico. Adapted from a recipe from Jane Butel’s Southwestern Kitchen, it uses our piloncillo, canela, and vanilla extract. I think this is just about the perfect cookie. Not too sweet, plenty short, the taste of piloncillo comes shining through and the hint of anise all make it perfect.
Makes 4 dozen cookies
- 2 cups unsalted butter or lard
- 1 cup Rancho Gordo Piloncillo
- 2 eggs
- 1½ teaspoons Rancho Gordo Pure Mexican Vanilla Extract
- 2 teaspoons anise seeds or 1 teaspoon anise extract
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons brandy or milk
- 1½ tablespoons ground Rancho Gordo Canela
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Using a stand mixer or electric mixer, beat the butter and 1 cup piloncillo until combined. Add the eggs, vanilla, and anise seeds, and beat until very light and fluffy.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the creamed mixture along with the brandy or milk. Continue mixing until a stiff dough forms. Form the dough into a disk about an inch thick and wrap in parchment paper. Refrigerate until chilled.
- Roll out the dough between the parchment paper so it’s about 1/2 inch thick. Cut with cookie cutters into shapes or rounds. Combine the 3 remaining tablespoons of piloncillo and the canela; sprinkle the cookies with the piloncillo-canela mixture, patting it in so it adheres.
- Place the cookies on ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies are just golden. Cool the cookies on wire racks.