Mrs. Regueiro's Plate: Twelve Days of Christmas Cookies & Treats: Day 12

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Twelve Days of Christmas Cookies & Treats: Day 12

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas and I'm finally finished with my baking ode to Twelve days of Christmas cookies and treats. (Happy dance time!!!) One of the most beloved holiday cookies that I love to pieces and seemed appropriate were these Alfajores. These Peruvian well-known goodies are almost like a shortbread cookie sandwiched in between a filling of dulce de leche. It's one of the most addicting sandwich cookies that I have ever tasted and I'm always eager and thankful for whenever my wonderful girlfriend, Liz, brings them around. I had told her if there were any occasions that she would bake them that I would love the opportunity to learn the tricks of the trade. Did I mention they were made with dulce de leche? (drool).
Photo updated 5.11.2011
Well, I never got the opportunity to bake these treats with Liz but I received the next best thing because I got her to write down the recipe for me. Wahoo!!! I was pretty confident in my baking skills since I had been baking cookies for the past three weeks and I also had Liz on the phone as I was baking these goodies up. One of the interesting ingredients in the recipe is Pisco, a native alcohol in Peru, which tastes similar to Aquardiente or Grappa. What an interesting twist for my last cookie - it's a boozy cookie (wink wink). I love it even more and it's something a little "extra extra" if you know what I mean. Another interesting ingredient to note is that cornstarch is a main ingredient which helps make the cookie dough light and stiff and the finished cookie nice and crumbly. I'm thrilled to be finished baking all Twelve Days of Christmas cookies and treats while enjoying this last batch all by myself....whoops I meant to say with all of you. Enjoy! :-P

Sidenote: This recipe was given to me measured in grams versus weight. I used a food scale to measure all the ingredients.
Adapted from Liz, my awesome and wonderful Peruano girlfriend
Printable recipe
7 ounces of cornstarch (200 grams)
3.5 ounces of flour (100 grams)
1.75 ounces of sugar (50 grams)
12 ounces of butter, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 shot of pisco or something comparable (Aquardiente or Grappa) *Optional
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 can of Dulce de leche


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or silpat baking mat.

In the bowl of the stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour cornstarch, baking powder, and baking soda.

Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients. Add the vanilla extract and pisco (optional but boozy cookies are extra-delicious).  Knead the cookie dough with hands until an uniform dough is made.

Roll cookie dough on a floured surface preferably on parchment paper. (Makes it easier to transfer). Using a small 2-inch cookie cutter cut circles and transfer them carefully to a greased cookie sheet.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and place on wire racks. Let cookies cool completely.

Assemble Alfajores: Take one of the cookies and carefully spread the dulce de leche on it. Place another cookie on top. Sprinkle with sifted confectioners sugar. Continue until all cookies are made.

Yield: Using 2-inch cookie cutters makes about 24 to 26 cookies. Using larger circles makes about 14 to 16 cookies.
Review: It's quite possible to measure the success of a cookie by how long a batch lasts. Honestly, I'm acting like a big fat Grinch on these and not sharing with anyone, or maybe I'll share with them with some of my favorite people. These cookies are absolutely AMAZING. The cookies by itself are not sweet at all but combined with the filling of dulce de's a heavenly delight.  If you decide to make any cookies for the holiday, this would be the one. Buttery and creamy with each bite, and oh sooooo addicting. You might have to make a double batch if you plan on making this for others, one for you and one for your family! Thank you again to Liz for the most wonderful cookie recipe!

Day 11: Magic Bars
Day 10: Oreo Mint Truffles
Day 9: Hazelnut & Dried Cherry Biscotti
Day 8: Spritz Cookies
Day 7: S'mores Cookies
Day 6: Andes Peppermint Crunch Cookies
Day 5: Gingerbread "Army Men" Cookies
Day 4: Chocolate Chip M&M Cookies
Day 3: Shortbread Almond Cookies with Guava
Day 2: Chocolate Toffee Cookies
Day 1: Cookies in a Jar

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