One of my favorite things to do is check out the weekly Food section of the New York Times and see what Melissa Clark has been cooking (or baking) up. That’s where I found this recipe for alfajores, a Latin American cookie that consists of rich, creamy dulce de leche between two buttery shortbread cookies. How could I resist? Read on for more…
After you make the cookie dough, you need to shape it into a log and chill it before slicing. I was having a really hard time getting the dough into that log shape, but a little Googling led me to the technique you see above – perfection. Check the video here for instructions.
Dulce de leche can be made at home using various methods – this recipe calls for boiling condensed milk until it caramelizes. Unfortunately, that comes with a risk of the cans exploding, which really wasn’t something I was interested in dealing with – so, I turned to my friends at Stick With Me Sweets who provided me with the most amazing, thick, creamy dulce de leche anyone could ever ask for. Much easier (for me) and more delicious than anything that comes from a can!
Some substitutions I made – I ran out of vanilla extract so I used vanilla sugar instead (which is why you can see the little vanilla bean specks in the dough). I also didn’t have brandy so I used a little amaretto, which I think actually added a nice touch of almond flavor to the dough. These cookies were crumbly and melt-in-your-mouth delicious, with a nice touch of citrus from the lemon zest. I could definitely see making these again – so, so good!
photos by me