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Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies

dulce de leche cookies

There are at least two kinds of eaters in the world--those that have dessert every night and those that don't. We're the latter sort, with the great exception of Company.  Company for dinner, that is.  My grandmother made dessert for her ten children every night.  To this day, my dad instinctively hunts around for a bit of chocolate when dinner's over.

Friends will be here tomorrow night, so I spent some time poring through my new Gourmet cookbook (the light green one for $21.95 at Costco that all of you should own).  Wyatt sat next to me on the couch, pretending that Harry Potter wasn't way above his reading level. His M.O. is to know everything, or at least pretend like he does.  Wonder where he gets that.

So I happily paged through--chocolate mousse?  Poached pears?  A decadent cake?  Most the time, I always seem to come around to cookies.  Quick, satisfying, easily packed up to send home with guests.  That's another way the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.  My mom has always loved a good cookie.  Normally, I would whiz right past something that called for a jar of dulce de leche.  Who has that it in their pantry?  Well, I do.  A PFI purchase several months ago, lolling about on my pantry shelf, waiting for the perfect pairing.

This is it.  These butter cookies, made with cornstarch and egg yolks, are so tender you'll want to cry.  Some filled cookies are too brittle for their filling, cracking apart when you bite into them.  Not these.  Lord, they are perfect.  And just the easiest little morsel any cook could hope to come by.  Grandmama, these are for you.  I don't know how you did it.

for grandmama

Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies
Reprinted almost exactly from the new Gourmet cookbook.  I used a 2" biscuit cutter, so this recipe made 20 cookies instead of the 32 promised by the recipe.  If you have a smaller cookie cutter, you can get more yield. I love tiny cookies.  And if you don't want to go to all this trouble for 20 cookies, double the recipe.

3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon brandy
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
About 1/4 cup dulce de leche (available in a jar at good grocery stores)
Confectioners sugar for dusting

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a large baking sheet or line with parchment paper.

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, brandy, 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 20-32 rounds (depending on size of cookie cutter) 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.


Reader Comments (24)

I'm literally drooling. (And I hate it when people say "literally" when they don't mean it.)

January 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMegan Cooley

Tips on dulce de leche:

1. You can readily find it in a small tin can in the Mexican / Latin / Spanish food aisle.
2. You can make your own with a can of sweetened condensed milk. (Google for recipes) I think it's basically boiling a can of the stuff for hours and hours. But do google for a recipe.

I'm not much of a cookie fan. I'd much rather have a full dessert than a cookie or two. Chocolate mousse, tiramisu, chocolate torte, creme caramel, flan, ooooh baby... (Luckily for me, I'm not a dessert every night sort of girl.)

January 9, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterpds

Ooh. I have the best tiramisu recipe. Tried and true. Now that you've planted the idea, it might be appearing soon...

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersarahmk

I'm a big baker and I think cookies are a brilliant dessert choice. Everyone loves them! These look incredible.

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDana

I'm working on tweaking one ... I love Tutta Bella's, and wish they gave out a recipe. But I'm not willing to whip both cream and eggs. I'm lazy. It's why I keep making Molly's chocolate cake. I can't get over how easy that recipe is.

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterpds

Oh, these look yummy! I am starting to think about what other fillings would be good... so many options!

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusan Swanson

I agree, Dana! Sometimes a "big dessert" pushes me over the edge. A cookie or two is just right, especially when they look like these!

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPam

Do I really have to put brandy? I don't have one, any substitute? I don't have any alcohol in the house, I'd really like to try this.

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRam

You totally don't have to put brandy. You can sub vanilla.

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersarahmk

Wow these look fabulous. I am going to add ducle de leche to my shopping list for next week so I can make these. Yum!

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJenna

O.k. ladies, please post both of those tiramisu recipes.

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEm

Now here is a cookie that I haven't made! I'm going to make these tomorrow for a gathering I'm going to, and I"ll get back to you on all the oooohhhs and aaaahhs!

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermfm

Yum! I am a teensy bit addicted to dulce de leche at the moment! These cookies sound perfect for fillings - must be the brandy. I really, really must try these instead of my usual, dull butter cookie recipe.
P.S. If you could make these into chocolate cookies with a bit of pepper, it would be really delicious also!

January 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatherine @ NightOwlChef

i just licked my lemon curd jar clean (thank you so much!), but that sounds good with these cookies too, doesn't it? somehow, dulche de leche is just the right, uncommon thing though. not only do they look delicious, but your photos of them are extraordinary. nice work. :)

January 11, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbethany

These look drooling on my keyboard, must get to my kitchen to make ASAP, delicious!

January 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHeidi

Well, I only had cajeta (goat milk caramel) and some Jameson's, but they really seem to be just fine this way too!

January 12, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterelenarain


I'd like to have your pantry please! :D

January 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiz

Just talked to my daughter and she told me she got 1700 hits on her blog one day recently. Do you think it could have something to do with these delicious cookies? Or do you think it has more to do with Wyatt's dimples and Loretta"s big brown eyes?.......or could it be she's one hell of a writer?

January 13, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermfm

Perfect. Absolutely perfect. My cuban friend, in love with Dulce de Leche, is having a belated birthday party around Valentines. I think some heart shaped sandwich cookies would be a winner. Thank you so much for the inspiration! :)

All of the above! Go, Mama!!

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPam

Those look great! I think it was meant for me to make these cookies. I put a can of dulce de leche in my grocery cart yesterday. And I had no plans for it, just thought I'd try to find a recipe. And here it is! Thanks for the yummy recipe!!

January 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSinful Southern Sweets

[...] make a couple of things to ship to my dashing brother for his birthday,  I came upon a recipe for Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies from the beautiful blog In Praise of Leftovers.  Please check out that blog for the recipe.  This [...]

They're amazing! Here in Argentina we call them "ALFAJOR" :)
July 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFlor
And cornstarch alfajores are the best thing ever :D
August 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

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