An intricately carved wooden mold breathes life into the traditional anise-flavored cookie dough of Germany's springerle. Springerle molds and rolling pins usually picture a theme, from nature to religion.
3 large eggs
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon anise extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
Vegetable cooking spray
How to Make It
Beat eggs at medium speed of an electric mixer until pale (5 minutes). Gradually add sugar, and beat 5 additional minutes. Add lemon rind and anise extract; beat well.
Combine flour and baking powder; add to egg mixture, beating well. Cover and chill dough at least 3 hours.
Let dough stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Divide dough into thirds. Place 1 portion of dough on a floured surface; roll to 1/4" thickness. Lightly spray mold with cooking spray. Place dough over mold; press firmly and evenly to imprint dough. Trim excess dough around rectangle. Invert onto a large parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Repeat procedure with remaining dough.
Let cookies stand, uncovered, in a cool, dry place 1 hour to set design. (Cookies should appear slightly crusted.)
Bake at 225° for 2 1/2 hours or until light yellow, but not golden. Cool completely on pan. Carefully remove from parchment paper.
The springerle mold used in the recipe was one of the large molds that measures about 9 iinches x 5 1/2 inches, so you get one large cookie from each portion of dough. You can use smaller round or square springerle molds to get individual cookies.