Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Alfajores are a shortbread-sandwich cookie originating in South America, often with dulce de leche in the middle and rolled in coconut or powdered sugar. I have been wanting to try making them ever since one of my virtual friends, who is originally from Paraguay, brought them up in passing. She got me really curious about them and even shared her Dad's recipe! I used a slightly altered version of it, after doing a bit of looking on the web, adding some cornstarch and egg yolks (which she said he often does anyway).
First I needed to make the dulce de leche. I had often heard you can make it using cans of condensed milk, boiled in a pot, but that freaked me out a little, so I looked around until I found a recipe that didn't come with kitchen-explosion warnings. I didn't really know what color I was going for, but I'm suspecting I could have and should have baked it longer.
Because here's the thing. I'm pretty sure the cookies were spot on - they are dense and a little crumbly and very much a shortbread texture. But the dulce won't stay inside, even after cooling all night and chilling in the fridge. It oozes out the sides making an embarrassment of the coconut I tried rolling them in. I still took pictures of their shaggy selves, but I expected the caramel to be a thicker layer on the inside. (Should have cooked it longer).
With some of the cookies, I tried jam in the middle. If anyone has a magic formula for sandwich cookies, I'd love to hear it. When they are this substantial they are impossible to eat without everything oozing everywhere!
at 11:42 PM