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Pestiños Recipe - Spanish Christmas Cookies from Andalucia


Spanish Christmas Cookies from Andalucia (c)

Pestinos - Spanish Christmas Cookies from Andalucia

Lisa Sierra (c) 2009 Licensed to About.com Inc.
Pestiños are flakey and delicate Spanish Christmas cookies from Andalucía, in southern Spain. They are very easy to make and the ingredients are probably already in your pantry – simply flour, anise seeds or flavoring, white wine and oil. Roll, cut and fry. Once fried, dip them in warm honey and enjoy!

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour


  • 3 1/2 oz (100 ml) olive oil
  • rind of 1 lemon
  • 4 tsp (15 gr) anise seeds (optional)
  • 3 1/2 oz (100 ml) white wine
  • 2 oz (60 ml) anise liqueur (see substitution note below)
  • 2 cups (250 gr) unbleached enriched white flour
  • 2 cups (500 ml) (approximately) canola oil for frying
  • 2 cups (250 gr) honey
  • 1 Tsp water


If you prefer, use How to Make Pestinos, a Step-by-Step Recipe with Photos.

Substitution Note: Anise-flavored liqueur can be purchased at most liquor stores and some gourmet supermarkets. If you cannot find it in your area, substitute 2 oz of vodka and 2 tsp of anise extract.

This pestiños recipe makes approximately 2 1/2 dozen pestiños or fritters.

Cut peel off lemon. In a 8 to 10-inch pan, fry lemon peel in olive oil until it turns brown. Remove pan from heat and add anise seeds. Stir and allow oil to cool. Remove and discard lemon peel.

Measure and pour the white wine and anise liqueur into a large mixing bowl. Add the cooled oil with seeds and the flour. Mix thoroughly until the dough forms a ball. (Add a few teaspoons more flour if the dough is too wet and sticky.) Cover with a kitchen towel and let sit in a warm place for 30 minutes.

Generously flour a cutting board. Place dough on board and roll out to the thickness of a coin (about 1/8-inch thick). Using a pizza cutter, cut into strips about 1-inch wide and 2-inches long (2.5 cm by 5 cm).

Pour oil into a 10-inch frying pan and heat. When oil is hot, fry pestinos in oil until golden and drain on a paper towel.

Mix honey and water in a small sauce pan and heat on low. Using a fork, dip pestinos into honey a few at a time and place on serving platter.

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