by rebecca deangelis
Ciambellone is an Italian pastry traditionally made for Easter. But it is also prepared throughout the year for special occasions. The word ciambellone means ‘big donut,’ which is why you always see it in a ring shape. But you can just as easily bake it into any shape you like. The texture is the key: lightly sweetened with a dense crumb that’s sturdy enough to dunk into milk or coffee yet moist enough to stand alone. I prefer it sliced and toasted. Perfetto.
Preheat your oven to 325F. In a bowl, sift flour, baking powder, and baking soda and mix thoroughly with a whisk. Set aside.
Using the paddle attachment of a standing mixer, beat softened butter with sugar until it is light and fluffy. Slowly add your eggs one at a time until homogeneous. Add the dry ingredients to your butter mixture, slowly incorporating at a low speed. Add the milk, anise liquor and vanilla and slowly mix till fully incorporated.
Butter and flour your ring shaped springform pan and scrape the batter into it evenly. Lightly sprinkle the top with granulated or raw sugar and put in it the oven till golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before removing from the pan and serving.