2000s Recipes + Menus

Butter Cookies with Dulce de Leche

Makes16 sandwich cookies
  • Active Time:25 min
  • Start to Finish:50 min
May 2005
In some Latin American countries, these cookies, called alfajores, are made with Pisco brandy distilled from white Muscat grapes grown in Peru, Chile, and Bolivia—but regular brandy works fine.
  • 3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softenened
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • 3/4 to 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon Pisco or regular brandy
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • About 1/4 cup dulce de leche
  • Confectioners sugar for dusting
  • Special equipment:

    a 1 1/2-inch round cookie cutter
  • Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter a large baking sheet.
  • Whisk together cornstarch, 3/4 cup flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl.
  • Beat together butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, then beat in egg yolks, Pisco, and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture until combined, adding 1 to 2 tablespoons flour if dough is sticky. (Dough should be soft.)
  • Form dough into a disk and roll out into an 11-inch round (1/8 inch thick) on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin. Cut out 32 rounds with cutter (reroll scraps if necessary) and transfer to sheet, arranging rounds 1/2 inch apart.
  • Bake until firm and pale golden around edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool 10 minutes.
  • Sandwich cookies with about 1/2 teaspoon dulce de leche. Dust with confectioners sugar.
Cooks' note: Cookies can be made, but not filled, 3 days ahead and cooled completely, then kept in an airtight container at room temperature.
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