Koulourakia – Easter Twists

Desserts, Recipes

4 large eggs, divided
1½ lb. unsalted butter
1/3 cup vegetable shortening (not margarine)
11/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup orange juice
4 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbs. cognac or brandy
1 tsp. vanilla
7 cups flour

Mix 1 egg with 1 Tbs. water to make egg wash. Cream butter, shortening and sugar in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add remaining eggs one at a time and beat 10 minutes more. Pour in orange juice mixed with baking powder, cognac, and vanilla. Mix well. Gradually add flour until a soft dough forms. Allow dough to rest 15 minutes. To form cookies, take a heaping tablespoonful of dough and roll into 7″ rope. Fold rope in half and twist together. Place twists 1″ apart on foil-lined cookie sheet.

Brush tops with egg wash. (Optional – sprinkle with sesame seeds before baking). Bake 350° for 15 minutes or until lightly brown. Remove from oven, brush once again with egg wash, and return to oven for 10 more minutes or until twists are golden.