Holiday season is cookie season! We are all about cookies this month: baking, decorating, gifting and hosting the classic cookie exchange. Today, we’re kicking off 30 days of holiday cookies, so be sure to check back every day for a new recipe! And for more inspiration and great recipes, visit our Cookie Central page.
Dulce de leche can easily be found in jars at most groceries and Latin markets. A cousin of caramel, it is sticky, gooey and perfect for pressing between two shortbread cookies. Alfajores can be dusted with confectioners’ sugar, rolled in toasted coconut or dipped in melted dark chocolate.
Dulce de Leche Alfajores
2 cups (10 oz./315 g.) all-purpose flour, sifted
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g.) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
4 Tbs. (1 oz./30 g.) confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml.) purchased dulce de leche
Preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a food processor, pulse the flour and salt to mix. Add the butter, sugar and vanilla and pulse until the dough forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and pat into a disk. Roll the dough to a thickness of 1/8 inch (3 mm.)
Using a 2 1/2-inch (6 mm.) round cutter, cut out as many dough rounds as you can. Briefly knead the dough scraps together just until smooth, roll out the dough and cut out additional rounds. You should have at least 32 cookies. (If the dough becomes too soft to handle, place it in the freezer for 2-3 minutes, then finish rolling and cutting.)
Transfer the dough rounds to the prepared sheets. Bake until the surfaces of the cookies are dry to the touch, 10-12 minutes. Transfer the cookies to wire racks and let cool completely.
Carefully spread 1 tablespoon of the dulce de leche on the flat side of half the cookies, being careful not to break the cookies. Place a second cookie, flat side down, on top of the filling. Dust the cookies with confectioners’ sugar and serve. Makes about 16 cookies.
Find more mouthwatering ways to end a meal in our cookbook Dessert of the Day, by Kim Laidlaw.