Dulce de leche cookies, or alfajores, originated in southern Spain with the Moors and were originally a popular Christmas cookie made with nuts and honey. Alfajores traveled with the conquistadors, and today versions of... them can be found in almost every part of South America and the Spanish-speaking Caribbean. In the US, Argentinian-style alfajores are arguably the most widely known: two crumbly cookies sandwiched together with a thick dulce de leche filling. Our whole-wheat version follows this very delicious tradition.
Cream butter, yogurt, and sugar for 1 minute in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add egg yolks, orange zest, vanilla extract, and rum. Beat until well combined.
Sift together whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to the butter and mix on low speed until dough comes together.
Transfer dough to a plastic bag and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
Remove dough from the refrigerator and divide it in half. Place half of the dough on a lightly floured work surface. Roll dough ¼-inch thick and cut out 2-inch cookies using a round cutter. Transfer cookies to the prepared baking sheet. Combine dough scraps with the other half of dough and re-roll dough to cut more cookies.
Bake cookies for 10 minutes until lightly brown. Remove from the oven and let them cool on the baking sheet.
Spread about 1½ teaspoons of dulce de leche on the flat side of a cookie and sandwich with the flat side of another cookie. Repeat with the rest of the cookies.
Dust cookies with confectioners’ sugar and serve.
Chef Naxielly Dominguez
You can make your own dulce de leche, but it’s easier to buy it ready-made. Many companies now offer it. If you can’t find any, go online. For these cookies, you’ll need the thick spreadable type of dulce de leche so avoid anything that says “sauce”. However, if what you buy does turn out to be too runny to spread, it’s an easy fix.
Empty the can or jar into a small saucepot and gently cook it down to a spreadable consistency over a low flame, stirring frequently as it thickens. Or for a more chocolatey fix, melt ⅓ cup of bittersweet baking chocolate and add to ⅔ cup of the runny dulce de leche to it. Let it cool and spread over the cookies as per recipe.