Oddly enough, most of the things and places and people that I do remember are memories somehow related to food. I remember flavors and restaurants and dinners with special people far longer than I can remember what street I turn down to get to the post office.
For those of you who have never had the privilege of biting into a crunchy, anise flavored Stella Dora cookie - you are missing out. I don't think that I've had one of the delicious cookies since I ate them with my grandmother and to be honest - I haven't even thought about them for years.
It wasn't until I pulled one of these crunchy anise flavored treats off of the warm pan and and took my first bite of anise flavored goodness that I realized just how powerful a food memory can be. I was immediately transported back to my 10 year old self sitting across from my grandmother in her tiny kitchen. As a tear rolled down my cheek I remembered my grandmother just as she was when I was 10 years old.
This recipe has given me new purpose in my cooking. I recognize now more than ever that food is powerful and memorable. Of course, I don't expect you to cry when you taste this cookie like I did but I still want you to try it. More importantly, I want all of us to be aware that food creates memories.
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt
¾ cup granulated sugar
½ cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1½ teaspoon anise extract
Beat eggs with whisk attachment until light and fluffy.
Add sugar, oil and extracts. Whisk another 2 minutes.
Stir in flour, baking powder and salt.
Pour into 3 greased loaf pans.