To taste specialties from South America, you don't have to travel straight to the continent. Many recipes can be implemented easily in your own kitchen, such as alfajores - the sweet cookies from Latin America.
They resemble double cookies with a filling and are a popular dessert in South America. Traditionally, they are filled with dulce de leche. So if you like caramel, you will love these delicious cookie treats. Try them!
An alfajor can be translated as "sandwich". This is two slices of cookie with a delicious filling in between. There are different variations, but the most popular is dulce de leche. And the fine milk caramel cream goes perfectly with the kind of shortbread dough that makes up the cookies.
Coconut flakes complete the sweetness and prevent the caramel cream from sticking everywhere. If you don't like coconut, you can use something else - ground almonds or finely chopped nuts, for example. Even a chocolate coating of the alfajores is possible. The many variations provide variety and a multitude of sweet treats to snack on.
You can either buy dulce de leche for your alfajores directly at Mate-Tee.de or easily make it yourself. You can use the caramel cream not only for the cookies but also for other snacking and for sweetening coffee or yerba mate.
Alfajores have Moorish-Spanish origins, but today they are considered a typical snack of southern Latin America, because they have undergone a long journey full of changes.
In the 8th century, the Moors conquered Spain. And they brought with them their pastry Alajú. In some areas it is still called that today. But the name Alfajor prevailed over time.
The term alfajor possibly comes from the Hispano-Arabic term al-hasu, which means filling. It refers to a pastry from the Andalusian Medina-Sidona and Murcia.
The Spaniards eventually brought their recipes to South America, where they were gradually modified. This is how the now familiar alfajores in the form of double cookies came into being. Therefore, German baking recipes usually have the South American version as a base.
We have put together an original Alfajores recipe for you. Let yourself be spoiled by these irresistible cookies.
For 20 cookies you need:
The required cookware:
Step 1: Wash the lemon thoroughly and grate it after having dried it.
Step 2: Then sift cornstarch, flour, baking soda and baking powder into one bowl.
Step 3: In the other bowl, mix the warm margarine and sugar. Add the egg yolks and mix everything together. Now add the lemon zest, vanilla extract and rum. Mix again.
Step 4: Add the margarine mixture to the flour and knead everything into a tough dough.
Step 5: The dough will be difficult to roll out. The easiest way is to flatten it with your hands on the work surface until it is about 5 mm thick. If you don't have a round cookie cutter, you can simply use a glass to cut out the circular cookies.
Step 6: Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Meanwhile, cover the cookie sheet with baking paper and place the cookies on it.
Step 7: Place the cookies on the middle shelf of the oven for 10 to 15 minutes. They should be very light, not golden. Then take the cookies out of the oven and let them cool.
Step 8: Spread dulce de leche on the first cookie. Press the second one on top. Now decorate the sides with the shredded coconut. They will stick to the caramel cream. And you're done!
You can also make the cookie dough for the alfajores ahead of time. Most cookie doughs can be stored in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days before they should be processed. Alfajores dough will also last up to a month in the freezer.
Note: The plastic wrap must enclose the dough as tightly as possible to prevent the top layer from drying out.
Once the sweet treats are ready, they can be stored in an airtight container for up to a week. Over time, the dulce de leche transfers moisture to the cookie dough. As a result, the alfajores become slightly softer. So if you like soft cookies, just wait a few days and then enjoy the treats with tea or coffee. Enjoy!