‘Baking is fun and can be easy.

There are several recipes of traditional Maltese rusks but I particularly like this one with no added fats and a straightforward nearly all-in-one method.

These cookies are meant to be slightly crude, on the larger side with a rusk type texture and great for dunking in a cup of coffee.

The enticingly strong aniseed flavour makes them very special.  The same or similar recipe is used to make Christening cookies [round rather than oval and slightly more refined in appearance with pink or blue or white icing piped on the top] and brides cookies [with additional pieces of candied peel].’

Maltese Village Cookies [Biskuttini tar-rahal] – no added fats

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 8-20

Maltese Village Cookies [Biskuttini tar-rahal] – no added fats

Maltese Biskuttini tar-rahal [no added fat]


  • 250g plain flour
  • 90g caster sugar with stevia
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground aniseeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole aniseeds
  • grated zest of an orange
  • grated zest of a lemon
  • a pinch of salt
  • Non stick baking spray
  • baking tray
  • baking paper


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  2. Prepare an ovenproof tray with baking paper and use a non stick spray.
  3. Place the eggs in a large mixing bowl and add the caster sugar with stevia. Use an electric hand whisk to beat them for around 6-7 minutes at full speed until it triples in volume and turns white and fluffy.
  4. Sift the flour twice into another bowl and add the baking powder, salt, aniseed powder and seeds, cloves, cinnamon and mix well.
  5. Combine the dry ingredients into the egg mixture by whisking the mixture. As soon as it starts coming together use your hands to form a dough.
  6. Dust your hands with flour and roll the dough into balls and place on the baking tray.
  7. Press down slightly with your finger to form into oval shapes.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes until the cookies are cooked but still pale in colour.
  9. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before removing them from the baking tray.


These traditional Maltese village cookies [Biskuttini tar-rahal] can be stored in an airtight container for a couple of weeks. They freeze well for 3 months.

For the recipe in Maltese click here


One Comment on “Maltese Village Cookies [Biskuttini tar-rahal] – no added fats

  1. Pingback: Zewg ricetti tal-biskuttini tar-rahal | Good Food Tips

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