Sunday, December 11, 2011

Biscochos...a family tradition. Done for 2011!

Every year in our family we get together and bake Biscochos, a small, crispy cookie flavored with Anise, Cinnamon and Cloves. It's almost like a Mexican version of the Snickerdoodle. And it's very popular. One of my blogging buddies, Paula from Sweet Pea also made some recently. She calls them biscochitos. Her recipe calls for brandy! I never thought about adding Brandy.

We grew up eating these as children. Our Tia Nico would make batches and batches of these and everyone always went home with a big Folgers coffee can full of them. It wouldn't be Christmas to us without this cookie and without Tamales, which we are making next weekend.

Here's my mom, the Head Chef and Baker and her two lovely assistants, me and my sister. My sister had hurt her back a couple of days ago so she was barely able to move. She was mainly there for moral support and entertainment value!

Last year we had the whole family, including my brothers, their spouses and kids in an out throughout the day baking. It was a real family affair and you can see last years pictures HERE if you so desire. But this year because my sister had hurt her back and my mom has been suffering with pneumonia and bronchitis we figured we wouldn't make them this year, but at the last minute we said "What the heck!"

My sister's two boys, Sean and Isaac were there helping for a bit early on. Isaac brought his Ipod and played some wonderful music for us. The boy has great taste in music. Here's a few pictures of the boys with me, with my mom and with their mom.

Sean and me

Me with Isaac, he's my nephew and my Godson.

My mom and her grandson, Sean.

My Mom and her grandson Isaac.

My sister and her boys.

And here's the boys, helping? Brotherly love!

Ok, now we're ready to get busy. I like to get it started with some energy the form of Agavero Tequila! This is a delicious sipping tequila that my cousin Stella introduced me to. Unfortunately...right after this picture was taken my nephew/godson spilled it :-(

Oh well, no crying over spilt tequila when there's Biscochos to be made! Several years ago my daughter gave me this Pink KitchenAid mixer and I love it! It makes creaming the sugar, shortening and eggs a breeze. You just set it and forget it. Well except for having to scrape the sides now and again.

While this stuff is getting creamed, we sift all the dry ingredients together. Then we mix the dry into the wet slowly and you knead, knead, knead the whole thing. Then we roll softball size balls out to about 1/4 inch thick and cut with a little pizza cutter that has a curly edge, like a crimping edge. That's the little gizmo in the picture.

My daughter April had to work and didn't get to come and help and hang out with us. She always likes to use cookie cutters instead of the little crimpy pizza roller, so I made a special tray of Christmas Cookies just for her.

Then you bake and here's what you end up with!

These little guys are so good right out of the oven but they actually get better as they get cold and age. They get crispy and sweeter. We doubled the recipe and look how many it made! If you would like the recipe, please click HERE.

My mom was kinda dreading making them as they are a lot of work and she wasn't feeling up to Par and my own sis's back is broken. But between the three of us we accomplished another annual Biscochos bakeoff! Doesn't my mom look happy here? All the work was worth it just for this picture!

And so ends another lovely day in my life. Now I just have to get through a week of work and then we get to start all over in the kitchen and make Tamales next week. Tune in for that!


  1. I wondered if I was calling this cookie the right thing. You would know, so for now on I'll know that they are Biscochos! I was surprised at how long these kept. After a week, mine were still crisp and good.

  2. They sound very similar to an Italian pizzelle which is big around here. Similar ingredients, but the pizzelle is very thin, usually has a lace like design. I think I would like your cookie better. More body to it.

  3. Paula,

    Don't worry. You are calling them the right thing. When we add "itos" to the end of something it's like a term of endearment. For example, we would call our son "hijo", but when we want to sweet talk him, we would call him "hijito". So Biscocho is the proper name, but biscochito is the endearing name.

    I'm trying to think of a word in English that we do that to. Right now the only thing I can think of is when someone does something nice to us and we say they are sweet but sometimes we say, You're such a sweetie.

    And they do get better as they age. I noticed you used Anise Seeds, we did to but we grind them up really fine in my mom's Bullit Machine.

  4. Sextant,
    I looked up the pizzelle and it's a gorgeous cookie! I'd never heard of it. It's almost like a wafer cookie. I bet it would be great with ice cream. My mother in law used to make a Polish cookie that was similar to the pizzelle, she used a little iron in the shape of a flower or snowflake that she would dip into dough then fry. Almost like our Mexican buneulos.

    It's funny that we can take take one recipe and make so many different types of cookies depending on our ethnicity. Biscochos would be from my Mexican Heritage, Snickerdoodles I guess would be American, the Pizzelle is Italian and my mother in laws cookies were Polish. Now I have to go find out the name of those cookies!!! I believe they may have been called Rosettes?

  5. The get-together (mother, sisters, nephews ) and the process of baking or cooking ,are more precious than the result itself.

    The biscochos look delicious! The pictures are terrific!

  6. DUTA - You are so right! The getting together and making memories is much more special and important than those cookies themselves. We had a wonderful time and the cherry on top of the cake is that the biscochos actually are quite I'm enjoying having them every morning with my coffee.

  7. "You are so right! The getting together and making memories is much more special and important than those cookies themselves."

    Don't BS Alicia, you do for that special sipping tequila!

  8. Sextant - It really is a very good tequila and I do love my tequila! The sad thing is you can only buy it in Mexico and you can only bring one bottle across the border at a time so once I finish it, that's going to be it. So I was just shocked that my nephew spilled it!!!

  9. I just love your blog post. You wrap a very festive time into a awesome summary of events. Love it!


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