To make German anise cookies, add flour and baking powder to whipped eggs and sugar along with anise powder or oil and lemon zest. Chill the dough, and roll it out using a springerle rolling pin to 1/8- to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut the cookies to the desired shape and bake in a pre-heated oven for about 15 to 30 minutes.
Start by whipping four eggs and 1 pound, or 4 cups, of confectioner's sugar until the mixture is thick, light and fluffy. To this, add 1 tablespoon of lemon zest and 1 tablespoon of ground anise seeds or four drops of anise oil.
Separately, sift 4 1/2 cups of all-purpose or cake flour along with 1 teaspoon of baking powder. Stir this into the egg-and-sugar mixture, and mix until all the ingredients are blended thoroughly to form a dough. Cover the dough, and chill it for one to four hours.
Then, dust a suitable flat surface lightly with flour, and roll the dough out. Cut the cookies out into 1 1/2-inch rectangles or any other shape. Place the cut cookies on a cookie or baking sheet so that they are 1/2 inch apart from one another. Sprinkle anise seeds over the cookies, and leave them uncovered overnight in a cool and dry area.
The next day, preheat an oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and bake the cookies without allowing them to turn brown. Cool the baked cookies, and place them in an airtight container for about a week to allow the flavors to blend well.