1. Combine flour and ricotta in large bowl. With pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture is evenly moistened and resembles coarse crumbs. Gather dough into a ball; divide in half and flatten into disks. Wrap and refrigerate 2 to 24 hours or until easy to handle.
2. Bring figs, water, 3 tablespoons sugar and anise to a boil in small saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer mixture 15 to 20 minutes, until figs soften and most of the liquid is absorbed. Cool. Transfer to food processor and pulse until finely chopped (mixture will be jam-like).
3. Heat oven to 375 degree F. Lightly coat two large cookie sheets with vegetable cooking spray. Pulse walnuts and remaining 1/2 cup sugar in clean bowl of food processor until walnuts are finely ground. Transfer to medium bowl. On lightly floured surface, roll one disk 1/8 inch thick. Cut out circles with 2-1/2-inch round biscuit cutter. Place 1 slightly rounded teaspoon fig filling in center of each circle. Fold dough over filling, pressing edges to seal, and shape into crescent. Lightly brush tops of crescents with egg white and roll in walnut mixture. Place on prepared sheets. Bake 15 to 18 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool on wire racks. Repeat with remaining dough and filling, re-rolling scraps. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.