FEATURED AUTHOR RECIPE
Italian anise-flavored cookies glazed with icing are perfect for Christmas
The only times The Adults cook are usually in times of crisis; Emily’s mother Gloria makes elaborate appetizers for her husband’s birthday party, even though they are getting divorced. After the divorce, Gloria struggles in her attempts to fulfill her duties as a mother, so she orders cookbooks, as though that makes her one step closer to being a better mother. She seems to feel a pressure to cook, as though everything could be better if she just made the perfect batch of cookies for her daughter.
Gloria makes the Italian Anise Cookies on the night of her first date with Bill, the same night she gets in a fight with her daughter. Gloria keeps getting interrupted in her attempts to make them, and by the end of the scene, Emily helps her mother finish rolling out the dough. It is the first time in the novel we really see the two of them working together on something. Creating and working with dough in your hands can be soothing, healing.
The recipe for the Italian Anise cookies is my mother’s. They were one of the first things I ever remember cooking with her. My mother is very Italian, and she takes a lot of pride in these cookies. She makes them every Christmas, and so many of them, that we usually eat them on Easter too.
Note: My mother and I would do seasonal colors
For the dough:
3 large eggs
For the icing:
4 tablespoons butter
1. To make the dough: Mix eggs, butter, and sugar in the large bowl of an electric mixer on low speed for 5 minutes. Add anise and lemon extracts and milk and mix well. Add flour and baking powder and mix well.
Yield: 44 cookies