Peruvian Alfajores, also known as Dulce de Leche Cookies, are a staple in the South American country.
Dulce de leche is one of my favorite things to eat. Gooey, sticky, sweet, and a bit savory if you burn the sugar too much. These Alfajores were calling my name the minute I saw them.
These little cookies sandwiched with caramel can be found in various South American countries such as Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, and Brazil. Each country has their own way to make the cookie, and Peru’s recipe is no exception.
The cookies start off with the preparation of the dulce de leche. All you need is a can of sweetened condensed milk and a pan of simmering water.
I have to admit, the first time I made dulce de leche I completely messed it up. After simmering on the stove for three hours, I popped upon the lid and it looked like milk. The water had evaporated around the can and in essence, the condensed milk had not cooked.
However, the second time I made it, the dulce de leche came out rich and smooth. I do believe I could have cooked it longer, but I didn’t have the patience.
To make the dulce de leche, place a can of sweetened condensed milk (with a tiny hole poked in the lid) into a pot of simmering water, making sure to keep the water one inch from the top. The liquid needs to simmer the whole time at that mark, so you need to continually add water to the pot.
After about 3-4 hours your dulce de leche will be nice and golden brown. Delicious!
Now onto the cookies!
The main ingredient in these cookies is actually corn starch making them super crispy and flaky. The cookies are a bit plain by themselves, so make sure to spread the dulche de leche thick between the sandwiched cookies.
Love South American Food?
Try making Brigadeiros from Brazil.
Or how about Tequeños from Venezuela?
Get the recipe for Peruvian Alfajores.
These Peruvian Alfajores are cornstarch cookies topped with homemade dulce de leche. Try this South American treat today.
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
Prepare the dulce de leche by using a can opener and opening a small cut into the top of the can. Place the can into a pot of water just below the rim of the can. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Let simmer 3-4 hours, adding more water when needed. Open can and whisk until smooth.
In a bowl whisk together the cornstarch, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Meanwhile in the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the egg yolks one at a time, scraping down bowl between each addition. Add in the vanilla extract. Add in the dry mixture and stir until combined. Turn the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap and form into a smooth ball. Cover with plastic wrap and chill 1 hour.
Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
Unwrap the dough and roll it about 1/4-inch thick. Using a circle cookie cutter or a glass, cut the dough into 2-inch rounds and place them on a greased cookie sheet. Bake until the edges are golden, about 13 minutes.
Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Spoon dulce de leche on the bottom a cookie and sandwich with the bottom of another. Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired.