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My mother was an excellent cook and baker. Many of her dishes were Italian. Mom was German and Irish but made them for our father, who was half Italian. We especially loved her pizzelles.

For those who do not know, pizzelles are a thin waffle-like Italian cookie. Traditionally, they are made with anise. Today you can find them in a number of flavors including vanilla, almond, chocolate, and orange. Mom made hers with vanilla and it is what my family continues to prefer.

I make the pizzelles for special events using my mother’s old pizzelle maker (which looks like a waffle iron) and her recipe. There probably are better makers on the market today but Mom’s works and I use it in her honor. This is one more way she remains in the middle of our celebrations.

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Following is my mother’s recipe. I use half butter and half margarine for the shortening and soften rather than melt it. This makes the batter a bit thicker. For a thinner pizzelle, it is best to melt the shortening. I also add a touch of almond extract.

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Pat Doyle’s Pizzelles

½ cup shortening, melted and cooled
1 ¾ cup flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
3 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
Powdered sugar

Preheat the pizzelle maker. Blend ingredients. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls in the center of each side of the pizzelle maker. Cover. Cook 30-60 seconds.

Remove pizzelles with a fork. Cool on wire rack or tray covered in paper towels. Sprinkle powdered sugar over both sides of the pizzelles.

©Mary K. Doyle

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