I spotted these white-glazed ring cookies (the name means “little wheels”) the first day we were in Barcelona, bought some and then bought them every day thereafter. I’d find them in fine pastry shops, supermarkets and neighborhood bodegas. Sometimes they’d be tossed into a basket and you could buy them the way you might loose candy; sometimes they’d be small enough to call tea treats; sometimes they were large enough to wear as bracelets; and always they had the flavor of anise, sometimes strong, sometimes faint. You could catch the flavor of honey in the cookies and sometimes something else, the occasional addition of orange flower water. There was a lot going on with this cookie, and all of it interested me.
These cookies are found not only in Spain but also in the Languedoc-Roussillon area of France and are traditionally flavoured with anise and orange flower water, though Dorie says that Banyuls, (a sweet red wine of the French Southwest), or Muscat (a floral white wine) are sometimes used too. For this reason, it’s pretty much an “anytime of day” cookie (morning, afternoon, apéro or evening).
Ok, so immediately after reading this description, I wasn’t sure I’d like these. I recognise them as being the sort of cookies that look much yummier than they actually taste LOL! I am also not a fan of anise or orange flower water in baking but was curious to try the recipe anyway – Dorie’s look so perfectly donut-y shaped and are really cute!
I made a tiny amount, because of this (1/3 of the recipe for about 10 cookies) and omitted the anise (actually realised I didn’t have any).
Dorie suggests a simple glaze but it is one that requires heating sugar and water to a certain temperature then cooking egg white with the sugar mix. For such a small amount of cookies I didn’t bother with that and just made an even more simple glaze with milk and icing sugar and dipped a few of them in.
These cookies were just “ok” in terms of taste – in retrospect I should have made them unflavoured as the orange water was overpowering for me. But I love the look of them and the idea behind them (an “anytime of day” cookie is always a good idea!).
Get the recipe for Dorie Greenspan’s Rousquilles from Dorie’s Cookies on p 303 of Dorie’s Cookies!
Want more cookie recipes? Buy Dorie’s Cookies on Amazon (this link should bring you to the Amazon store geographically closest to you) or for free worldwide shipping, buy from The Book Depository. Then join us over on Tuesdays with Dorie and bake your way through the book!
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Disclosure: I was provided with a copy of “Dorie’s Cookies” for review purposes. I was not asked to write about the book, nor am I being compensated for doing so. All opinions 100% my own.
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