Alfajores are a really popular treat all over Latin America. You will find them in a lot of bakeries around Argentina, Peru, Bolivia and Venezuela. These soft filled cookies are certainly indulgent; combining chocolate and dulce de leche to make the perfect sweet treat for all your afternoons.
In some countries the presentation may change a bit; you can find them filled with fruit jam instead of dulce de leche and in other places you will see alfajores with shredded coconut all over the dulce de leche. Be creative while filling and decorating yours!
The easiest method to temper chocolate is called “seeding”. Special tools are no needed, just high quality chocolate. The Couverture Chocolate from Santa Barbara Chocolate is perfect to temper due to grade AA cocoa butter.
For the cookies:
- 1 ½ cups of all purpose flour
- 1 cup of cornstarch
- 1 cup of sugar
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 cup of butter, room temperature
- 4 tbsp of Rainforest Red Cocoa Powder
- 1 tbsp of vanilla extract
- 1 tsp of baking powder
- A pinch of salt
For the filling and decoration:
- 2 cups of dulce de leche
- 6 oz Couverture Chocolate
For the alfajores cookies:
- In a large bowl, sift your all purpose flour, cornstarch, cocoa powder and baking powder. Whisk to combine. Don’t forget to sift the dry ingredients to avoid lumps in the batter.
- In a separate bowl, cream together the room temperature butter, sugar, pinch of salt, egg yolks and vanilla extract. You need to mix these really well until light and fluffy. An electric mixer is recommended but you can also do it by hand.
- Incorporate the dry ingredients mixture into the wet ingredients.
- Fold in your dry ingredients until completely combined.
- Take your alfajor cookie dough and place it in the refrigerator for 2 hours. You need it to be firm enough to make dough balls.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Add some flour to a flat surface and roll your dough over it until is around 5 mm thick.
- Using a cookie cutter, cut your alfajor cookies around 30 mm diameter. You can do them larger or smaller, depends on how you like them better.
- Bake your alfajor cookies for 10 minutes.
- When ready let them cool down before adding the filling.
- Add around 1 tbsp of dulce de leche over an alfajor cookie.
- Place another cookie on top and slightly press down to make sure the filling spreads even.
- Over a double boiler, melt 4 oz of the Couverture Chocolate. Stir continuously until the chocolate is completely melted. Make sure the water doesn’t touch the pot where the chocolate is because it can ruin the tempering process.
- When your chocolate is completely melted, take it off from the heat and place the bowl into another bowl with ice. Stir continuously to cool down the chocolate a bit. You just want to lower the temperature a bit, keep it still warm.
- Your chocolate will feel thicker when cooler, that is when you have to add the remaining 2 oz of chocolate and stir until all the chocolate is melted.
- Take your alfajores and dip them into the tempered chocolate. You can cover them in chocolate for complete or just dip half so people can see the filling.
- Let them set and then serve them with milk or coffee!