Navigating my way through Pinterest one day, I came across a site that featured many Mexican recipes for traditional sweet breads. I tend to shy away from them, only because sometimes they don’t translate well and I would hate to ruin the recipe. This recipe for roscas de canela caught my eye because it required very few ingredients and I could actually understand the directions completely. The only thing that stood out to me were the instructions to bake the cookies for 45 minutes! Well, good thing my instincts as a cook kicked in and I set my timer for 15 minutes. They were done! Any longer and I would have been looking at burnt cookies. And of course, as always, I added my own touch to the recipe by added a little ground anise and dredging the cookies in a cinnamon and sugar mixture. This simple, but tasty cookie reminds me very much of the hojarasca and polvorones cookies that i grew up with.
Yields 20 cookies
½ cup shortening
½ can sweetened condensed milk (6 ounces)
2½ cups flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground anise
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup sugar, mixed with 2 teaspoons of cinnamon for dredging
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, set aside. Sift the flour, 1 tablespoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon anise, and baking soda together into a bowl. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, beat the shortening with a mixer, until fluffy. While the mixer is still running, add in the condensed milk, and gradually add in the flour as much as you can. Mix in the rest with a wooden spoon to form a dough.
3. Roll out 20 equal size dough balls. On a flat surface, gently, using your hand, roll ball out into the shape of a skinny cigar. Bring the ends together to form a circle and transfer to lined baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes until lightly browned. Remove from oven and while still warm, carefully dredge in the cinnamon/sugar mixture. Cool completely before storing in airtight container.