• Country Bread dough (recipe follows) ½ recipe
  • Extra virgin olive oil 1 cup
  • Orange zest 1 strip
  • Aniseed 1 Tbsp.
  • Sugar, plus 1 Tbsp. for sprinkling tops ½ cup
  • Baking soda 1 tsp.
  • Cinnamon, ground 1 tsp.
  • All-purpose flour 1 cup
  • Almond halves ¼ cup


  1. Oil a large bowl. Place the kneaded bread dough in the bowl, turn it to oil both sides, and cover with a damp cloth. Put in a warm place to rise until doubled in bulk, 1 to 2 hours. Combine the oil in a small pan with the orange zest and heat it over medium heat until the zest begins to turn brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the aniseed. Let the oil cool completely, then remove and discard the orange zest. Stir in the ½ cup of sugar, baking soda, and cinnamon into the cooled oil.
  2. Punch down the dough. Pour the oil mixture into the depression in the dough and begin kneading it in. Sprinkle it with some of the flour and continue working the oil into the dough, gradually adding the remainder of the flour. When most of the oil has been absorbed, turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead it for a few minutes.
  3. Cover it with a cloth and allow it to rise for 30 minutes. Lightly dust 2 or 3 baking sheets with flour. Break off pieces of the dough about the size of an egg. Pat them out into 4-inch circles. Place them on the prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle the tops with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and place an almond half in the center of each. Let it rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the buns in upper and lower oven shelves, switching position and rotating pans halfway through baking until they are lightly golden, about 20 minutes total. Cool the buns on a rack. They may be stored in an air-tight container for up to 1 week.

Number of servings (yield): 4

Meal type: snack

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

My rating: 4 stars:  ★★★★☆ 1 review(s)