Spring has finally arrived back here in Northern Virginia.  After a nasty winter (I’m from Southern California) I was so ready.  This last week I have been feverishly fixing up the garden for our adoption home study home inspection.  Now that it will be over with tomorrow I can get back to cooking and baking.  Italian Easter cookies have a nice mild buttery taste.  They are meant to be decorated in easter egg colors and make a nice change from the typical Easter candy fare. 

Italian Easter Cookies

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup powdered sugar
2 1/2 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

1 cup powdered sugar
4 teaspoons milk
4 teaspoons light corn syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Beat together the oil, butter, eggs, vanilla, salt, baking powder, and sugar until smooth. Add the flour, beating until smooth. Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour.

Scoop the dough into 2-teaspoon-size (1/2-ounce) balls; a teaspoon cookie scoop works perfectly here. Roll the balls into logs about 4 inches long and about 1/2-inch in diameter. Coil into doughnut shapes, leaving a small hole in the middle.

Place the shaped cookies on parchment lined baking sheets, leaving about 1 inch between them. Bake them in a preheated 350°F oven for about 18 minutes. They may have the merest hint of golden color on top, but they definitely won’t be brown. Remove them from the oven, and transfer to a rack to cool completely before icing.

To ice the cookies: Mix powdered sugar, milk and corn syrup. Beat until thoroughly mixed and you have a spreadable icing, adding more milk if necessary. (Tint the icing if you wish.) Dip the top of each cookie in the icing and sprinkle with sugar decorations. Allow the frosting to harden before storing the cookies. Yield: 3 1/2 dozen cookies.



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