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alfajores

So, now that you’ve made all that dulce de leche you’re probably wondering what to do with it (a not uncommon problem in my house). If you haven’t already eaten it straight from the can, or if you have but still have some left over – alfajores could just be the cookie answer you’ve been waiting for.

I’m a traditionalist, which means that my top two cookies are chocolate chip (with pecans, obviously) and Anzac biscuits. After trying alfajores for the first time, I am convinced it now rounds out my top three. They’re essentially melting moments with caramel in the middle. Winning.

Alfajores
makes 14 2.5″ cookies
from Christine Gallary at chow.com

113g (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
⅓ cup granulated sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 tbsp pisco or brandy (optional)
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 cup cornstarch
¾ cup plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp fine salt
1 can dulce de leche
icing sugar, for dusting

  1. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the egg yolks, pisco/brandy and vanilla and mix until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  3. Place the cornstarch, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into the mixer bowl and mix on a low speed to combine – just until the dough comes together.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a piece of parchment paper, and chill in the fridge for an hour.
  5. Before rolling the dough, preheat your oven to 180C and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. Remove the dough from the refrigerator, unwrap it, and place it on a lightly floured work surface (or between two sheets of parchment paper).
  7. Roll to 6mm thickness, then cut out dough using a 2″/5cm fluted cookie cutter (these expand to about 2.5″), rerolling the dough as necessary until all of it is gone.
  8. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets, at least 2cm apart and bake about 12-14 minutes until the cookies are firm and pale golden on the bottom – they should remain pale on top. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  9. Flip half of the cookies upside down and gently pipe or spread the dulce de leche on each. Place a second cookie on top and using the flat of your palms (or else they’ll crack), gently press to create a sandwich.
  10. Dust generously with powdered sugar before serving.
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