Above scene is of the Old State Capitol, part of the KHS history campus in downtown Frankfort. Tours are available on Saturdays during winter hours (now through mid March), and Tuesday – Saturday all other times. All tours start at the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History. Call 502/564-1792 for info.

from all of us at the Kentucky Historical Society

The holidays are all about great memories, and with your help we have made plenty this year. As a small token of our appreciation, we would like to share this cookie recipe from the grandmother of our own curator of object learning, Julie Kemper.

We also invite you to learn how a simple KHS artifact brought back powerful memories of a family holiday tradition. You can read Julie’s heartwarming story by clicking:

Grandmother’s Cookies

May you make your own wonderful memories this holiday season — and enjoy some delicious Italian cookies, too, courtesy of Grandma Maio!

Grandma Maio’s Pizzelles

Note: Best if mix is made 24 hours ahead of baking


  • 6 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 5 T vanilla (original recipe uses 6 Tb. vanilla OR 4 Tbl. Anise)
  • 1 T anise extract (extract is better than flavoring but expensive)
  • 1 cup oil (canola good; original recipe calls for 1 cup melted margarine)
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 4 t baking powder (check expiration date)


  • Beat eggs, adding sugar gradually. Beat until smooth.
  • Add oil and vanilla and/or anise.
  • Sift flour and baking powder; add to egg mixture. Mix until smooth. The batter will be sticky, but loose enough to be dropped by spoon.
  • Drop a tablespoon of the batter in the center of the pizzelle maker pattern and bake until golden brown. Baking time for electric models is about 1 minute and about ½ minute on each side for over the stove models. Makes about 50.
  • Serve topped with powdered sugar.