Pompette de Solliès
This year Brigitte introduced something new to our traditional dessert platter, having gotten a new recipe recently from a woman she met in Solliès Ville in the Var. It is a pretty little village in the Cote d'Azur that is perched above the little town called Solliès Toucas where Loic and I were married 13 years ago.
These little cakes are addictive and delicious, perfect for people like me who are naturally drawn to savory things but seduced by all that is sweet. They have a distinctive gentle anise and olive flavor that I associate with our frequent visits to the south of France, and I have added them to my list of Christmas treats to make every year from now on.
Since these biscuits keep exceptionally well, they are perfect for including in gift boxes. The recipe that follows is for giving quantities. If you're making it for family only, you can easily divide it by two or three and get the same results.
Recipe: Pompette de Solliès
1.5 kg flour
750 g sugar
500 ml oil (neutral)
250 ml olive oil
60 g anise grains
1 bowl water, to soak the anise seeds
teaspoons of water, as needed to make the dough
Soak the anise seeds in cold water for 15 minutes. Put the flour, sugar, and the strained seeds in a bowl and whisk to combine. Add the oils and work until it is a stiff dough. If the dough is not coming together, add water by the teaspoonful, to get the dough to stick together. Divide the dough into two parts, and roll it into snakes about 2 cm (an inch) thick. Cut lengths about 3 inches long (7 cm) and roll this dough out thinly. Cut into shapes and bake in a medium oven (180C/ 350F) until slightly browned around the edges. Cool and store in a tightly closed container.
Yield: 300 small biscuits