Anise Bread from Italy

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Anise Bread from Italy
  1. Combine flour, sugar, and anise seed together in a very large bowl; create a well in the center.

  2. Mix warm water and yeast together in a bowl. Let stand until the yeast softens and begins to form a creamy foam, about 10 minutes.

  3. Beat warm milk, eggs, and butter together in a bowl; stir into yeast mixture. Add milk mixture to the well in the flour mixture. Knead flour-milk mixture using your hands until dough and your hands are no longer sticky. Cover dough with a clean cotton cloth and let rise, 8 hours to overnight.

  4. Grease and flour 6 loaf pans.

  5. Punch dough down and divide into 6 portions. Mold each portion into a round shape and place each in a prepared pan. Cover pans and let rise for 1 hour more.

  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

  7. Bake in the preheated oven until bread is cooked through, 45 to 50 minutes.

Cook’s Note:

This recipe is traditionally made in the spring with low humidity.

My grandmother used to cover the dough with light winter coats/blankets to create extra warmth, but not heavy enough to weigh down on rising dough.

Grease and flour 6 pans. I’ve used everything from 9-inch round pans to standard bread pans. You need 6, so you’ll need to get creative!

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