ARGENTINA

Alfajores

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Ingredients

  • 120 g (1 cup) whole grain or white flour
  • 50 g (1/3 cup) cornstarch
  • 5 g ( 1 tsp) baking powder
  • 115 g (1/2 cup) low-fat (or regular) yogurt
  • 70 g (1/3 cup) muscovado (or white) sugar
  • 1 egg
  • vanilla extract (to taste)
  • 200 g (7 ounces) homemade dulce de leche
  • 25 g (1/4 cup) unsweetened shredded coconut

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F) and prep your cookie sheet. Mix together the flour, cornstarch and baking powder; set aside.

Beat together the yogurt and sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl. Slowly add the egg and the vanilla extract. Gently fold in the flour mixture with a spoon, making a crumbly dough. When the dough becomes cohesive enough, press it together into a ball with your hands. Wrap the ball with a plastic wrap and chill for about 30 minutes.

Roll out the dough, using as little extra flour as possible, about 5 mm (¼ inch) thick. Cut out about 50 small circles. Place the cookies on the prepared cookie sheets.

Bake in the preheated oven 7 to 10 minutes. Remove the cookies immediately to cool on a wire rack.

When they are completely cool, sandwich two and two cookies together with the homemade dulce de leche (you can prepare that beforehand, as it can be wonderfully stored in the fridge for days). When done, roll the sides of your alfajores in the shredded coconut. You should have about 25 of them.

Homemade Dulce de Leche

Ingredients

  • 720 ml (3 cups) milk
  • 240 g muscovado sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean (or some vanilla extract if you don’t gave a bean)
  • ½ tsp baking soda

Preparation

Combine the milk, sugar, vanilla bean and seeds in a large saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Once the sugar has dissolved, add the baking soda and stir to combine. The reaction to adding baking soda is quite amazing, as the whole thing starts foaming and rising, so don’t get scared.

Reduce the heat to low and cook uncovered at a bare simmer for about an hour. After that, remove the vanilla bean, if you used one.

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