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My family calls these "Italian Cookies". They can be made with Anisette or with Anise flavoring. The orange juice adds nice flavor. They are a cake-like cookie that is a Christmas tradition in my family. (They get huge due to all the baking powder, so do not roll too large).
Also sometimes called 'Mexican wedding cookie', 'Russian tea cakes', or 'butterballs', can also be made into crescents. You can also substitute pecans and they are very good as well. This is the best version of these I have ever seen, it was given me by a friend who grew up in central Europe.
These soft Italian-style cookies are a hit with everyone. The ricotta keeps them moist, and the recipe yields a large batch, which is great since the baked cookies freeze so well. Do not freeze the unbaked dough. You can decorate them with chopped candied cherries, colored sugar or candy sprinkles.