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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Italian Sesame Seed Cookies

In celebration of the All Things Italian Festival in Fairfield, Iowa, I'm posting some tasty cookie recipes as everyone bakes authentic Italian cookies to be sold at he Festival. In case you haven't noticed, most Italian cookies are not very sweet, but are delicious with coffee. For a few more cookie recipes, see Viriginia at Italy lovers blog.

My friend Dena combined a two recipes to create this very tasty crescent shaped Sesame Seed Cookie. Her dad and another Italian recipe found online spelled the cookies phonetically. The spelling is probably Giugiuleni. (There are no J's in the Italian language).

Giugiuleni (pronounced JuJulanie)
Italian Sesame Seed Cookies

½ pound butter - softened
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Anise Flavoring/ extract
2 ½ cups flour (may need to add more)
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
Milk (for dipping)
12-16 ounces Sesame Seeds

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Cream together butter and sugar. Mix in eggs, vanilla, and a few drops of anise flavoring. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl. Gradually add dry ingredients to wet mixture to form a soft dough. Pinch off pieces of dough and roll them into small thumb size logs (about 1 ½ to 2 inches long and about ½ inch thick).

Pour milk and a few drops of anise flavoring in a shallow bowl. Put sesame seeds in another shallow bowl or plate. Dip dough into milk and then roll them in sesame seeds to coat. Place on a greased or parchment covered cookie sheet about 1 inch apart. I make crescents.

Bake at 425 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes. Mine took longer. Keep peeking.

Cool on racks. Can be frozen. Makes about 2 to 3 dozen.

You can double the recipe, but try 5 eggs, not 6, and see how the dough looks.

Do you have any Italian Cookie recipes you'd like to share here? Buon Appetito!


  1. These are just like the cookies my nonna used to make - so wonderful. Your post is making my carb-fast very difficult to maintain today!
    ahh, Italian food

  2. Thanks for your comment. The sesame cookies were delicious. We sold over 1300 different kinds of cookies at our Italian Street Festival on Friday. Hope you're off your carb fast by now!

  3. To clarify my comment, we sold 1300 total cookies of various varieties.