- 3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup dark corn syrup
- 3 tablespoons hot water
- 2 teaspoons anise seeds
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 to 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- Sifted powdered sugar
- Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well. Add syrup, hot water, and next 7 ingredients; beat at low speed until blended. Gradually add 4 cups flour to butter mixture, beating at low speed until blended after each addition.
- Stir in enough remaining flour to form a stiff dough. Cover and chill 3 to 4 hours.
- Divide dough into 8 portions; roll each portion into a 1/2- to 3/4-inch-thick rope. Cut ropes into 1-inch lengths, and place 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets.
- Bake at 350° for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to wire racks to cool. Roll in powdered sugar.
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