Alfajores (alfa-hor-ays) are soft, buttery cookies from South America made, in part, with cornstarch for an ultra-tender, crumbly cookie. Sticky dulce de leche holds the cookies together. To take these sandwich cookies to the next level, roll the edges in dried coconut flakes or cover them with powdered sugar.
Cuisine: Argentinian, South American
Keyword: caramel, cookies, dessert, dulce de leche
Servings: 12sandwich cookies
Author: Chef Sara Furcini
A plain or fluted 2-inch round cookie cutter for stamping the dough
1cupcornstarchspooned and leveled
3/4cupall-purpose flourspooned and leveled, plus more for dusting
Mix the dry ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk the cornstarch, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to combine. Set aside.
Cream the butter with the sugar. Use a handheld mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment to mix the butter and sugar together over medium-high speed, scraping down the sides with a spatula, until fluffy and pale yellow, about 3 minutes. Add the egg yolks, brandy, and vanilla and mix again to incorporate, about 30 seconds.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Add half of the dry ingredients to the wet mixture and mix on low speed just until combined, about 20 seconds. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix just until fully incorporated, but no further, about 15 seconds.
Wrap and refrigerate the cookie dough. Spread plastic wrap on the counter and set the dough on top. Without handling the dough, wrap the edges to form a thick disc. Tightly seal the top and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour 20 minutes minimum.
Preheat. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 350°F and place the oven rack in the center. Line a sheet tray with a silpat or parchment paper.
Shape and bake the cookies. Sprinkle flour and a few dashes of cinnamon, if desired, on the counter-top. Place the cold dough on top and use a rolling pin to spread quickly, about 1/4-inch thick. Stamp out as many cookies as you can and use an offset spatula to transfer the cookies to the prepared sheet tray, about 1/2-inch apart. Bake for 12 minutes; it's ok if the cookies are still pale. Wrap and refrigerate remaining dough until firm, then roll, stamp, and bake the remaining cookies.
Smear and serve. Turn half the cookies over and smear about 2 teaspoons dulce de leche on the over-turned halves. Place a second cookie on tophttps://amzn.to/3bVACo7 to form a sandwich. Serve.
Cornstarch - If you don't have cornstarch, you may substitute tapioca flour (aka tapioca starch) or arrowroot.Brandy - Any brandy will work in this recipe. You may use an alternative alcohol that you like the flavor of instead, or increase the amount of vanilla to 2 teaspoons.Dulce de Leche - You can purchase high quality dulce de leche in the baking aisle or online (I like San Ignacio brand), so there's really no need to make your own. Variation Tip: Drizzle or dip the cookies in melted chocolate or roll the edges in dried coconut. You can also dust them with powdered sugar just before serving using a sifter or sieve.