The dough for these traditional Pugliese Christmas treats is made with just flour, sugar, salt, olive oil and white wine, which is then coiled up, deep-fried, and sprinkled with lemon zest and cinnamon. There are definitely worse ways to enjoy Chardonnay.
Did you know there was such a thing as a state cookie? The biscochito (a sugar cookie traditionally made with lard, anise and some type of alcohol, then dusted with cinnamon and sugar) was designated the State Cookie of New Mexico in 1989. Andrew Zimmern’s version gets its anise flavor from a splash of Pernod, the classic French pastis.
These cookies are spiked with a nice, hefty dose of grappa, an Italian digestif made from pomace (the stems and seeds of grapes leftover from winemaking). While its reputation is somewhat spotty—you may have heard it referred to as “firewater”—using a decent grappa here can give your cookies grape or even floral notes.
Boy, do Italians know their boozy cookies or what? These mini biscotti are made with vin santo, a Tuscan dessert wine produced from late-harvest grapes, which are dried on straw mats to concentrate their sugar. Bonus points if you follow tradition and dip them in vin santo also.