When I was in high school, I had a friend whose family was of Italian origin. About this time every year, she and her mother would make pizzelle (pronounced like pizza –a +elle). It was almost as fun watching them being made as it was eating them! Although I don’t bake them myself, I have always been intrigued by these delicate cookies.
Pizzelle are a waffle cookie made with butter, flour, sugar, and eggs and flavored with either vanilla, anise, or lemon. The batter is poured into a pizzelle iron (like a waffle iron), which would then be placed on a hot stove — although nowadays most pizzelle irons are electric. The iron stamps a pattern into the dough as it cooks. When I was looking for Christmas cookies to re-create, this was one of the first ones to come to mind. That snowflake pattern was just dying to be done up in yarn.
The pattern is worked in two layers to create the depth needed to make the design pop. Using black tea to stain the bottom half of the cookie before crocheting layer 2 gives it a slightly darker color and really making the design stand out, as it does on the real life cookie. I used a tea with an aroma that I adore and the resulting pizzelle have become wonderful sachets in my home.
Pizzelle Cookie Crochet Pattern
Finished size = 5″
0.5 ounces of worsted-weight yarn in cream (I Love This Yarn in Cream)
D-3 (3.25 mm) crochet hook
2 cups of prepared black tea
Casserole dish or shallow bowl
Note: The 3-ch at the beginning of each round counts as a dc.
Rnd 1: Ch 3, 11 dc in ring. Join with slst to top of 3-ch. (12)
Rnd 2: Ch 3, dc in same st, 2 dc in ea dc around. Join with slst to top of 3-ch. (24)
Rnd 3: Ch 3, dc in same st, dc in next dc, * 2 dc in next dc, dc, rep from * 10 more times. (36)
Rnd 4: Ch 3, dc in same st, dc in next 2 dcs, * 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 2 dcs, rep from * 10 more times. (48)
Rnd 5: *Sc in next dc, sk 1 st, 5 dc into next dc, sk 1 st, rep from * 11 more times. Slst in first sc to join and BO. Work in ends.
Bring 2 cups of water to boil, add tea, and let steep until the tea develops a rich amber color (about 10 minutes). I used Harney & Sons Paris black tea. It has a fruity aroma that turned the pizzelle into a wonderfully fragrant sachet.
Arrange the pizzelle in a shallow bowl and pour the tea over them. Let them sit submerged in the tea for 15 minutes or more. Dry completely before continuing with Layer 2.
Note: This layer begins by picking up stitches on the top of Layer 1.
Rnd 1: Pull up a loop in the FL of the first dc of Layer 1’s Rnd 1, ch 1. Sc in ea FL around, join with slst to the first ch of the rnd. (12)
Rnd 2: Ch 3,
* sk, working in the BL only (tr, ch 10, tr) in next sc,
rep from * 4 more times. Sk, tr, ch 5, dtr into the top of 3-ch at beg of rnd.
Rnd 3: * Ch 4, tr into the sp where next two 10-chs in Rnd 2 meet,
ch 4, sc into next 10-ch sp.
Rep from * 5 more times. (Instead of final sc, slst into the base of 4-ch at beg of round.)
Rnd 4: * Ch 7, sk 4 sts, (sc into next st and post of the sc in Layer 1)
(Instead of final sc, slst into base of 7-ch at beg of rnd).
BO, and work in ends.