Alfajores, Argentinean style

    1 hour 40 min

    This is a traditional biscuit that is much loved in most Latin cultures. Even my mother-in-law says they're the BEST, and that is saying a lot considering she is from Argentina!

    49 people made this

    Makes: 36 biscuits

    • 200g plain flour
    • 325g cornflour
    • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 225g unsalted butter, softened
    • 150g caster sugar
    • 3 egg yolks
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla rum
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
    • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
    • 325g dulce de leche (see footnote)
    • 50g desiccated coconut

    Prep:30min  ›  Cook:10min  ›  Extra time:1hr chilling  ›  Ready in:1hr40min 

    1. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4. Line baking trays with parchment. Whisk together the flour, cornflour, bicarb and baking powder; set aside.
    2. Beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks one at a time, allowing each yolk to blend into the butter mixture before adding the next. Beat in the vanilla rum, vanilla extract, lemon extract and lemon zest with the last egg. Gently fold in the flour mixture with a spoon, making a crumbly dough. When the dough becomes cohesive enough, press it together into a ball with your hands. Wrap with cling film and chill for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
    3. Roll out the dough, using as little flour as possible, to about a 6mm thickness. The dough will have an unusual consistency. Cut with a small round biscuit cutter. Continue pressing the dough together, rolling it out, and cutting until you have used it all. Place biscuits 1cm apart on the prepared baking trays.
    4. Bake in the preheated oven until set but not browned, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove the biscuits immediately to cool on a wire rack.
    5. Spread the underside of a cooled biscuit with a teaspoon of dulce de leche, then sandwich together with another biscuit until the caramel oozes out the sides. Roll the sides in the desiccated coconut.

    Dulce de leche

    Dulce de leche is an Argentinean favourite and is essentially just a caramel sauce, much like the filling used in banoffee pie. Feel free to use caramel sauce found in squeezy bottles or tins, such as Carnation. Or, make your own with our recipe.

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    Reviews in English (49)


    Hi Chris, I actually had a question about this recipe - is it really 2 1/2 CUPS of cornstarch? Or is that supposed to be teaspoons? Just checking as I really want to make these cookies! Thanks. Val  -  20 Feb 2011  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    It is nice to see more latinamerican recipes on this site. My father is Argentinian, and of course we are big fans of alfajores (specially the Havanna brand). I would only suggest adding tangerine zest to the cookie dough, as in some traditional argentinian recipes. Other recipes call for using cooked egg yolks in the dough. Also if you don't have original dulce de leche, you can make a very similar one by boiling a can of condensed sugared milk during at least 2 hours, but BEWARE: cool off completely before opening!  -  29 Oct 2009  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Really good recipe, loved them, just like I used to get in Argentinean bakery. I had the same problem as a previous reviewer that they would crumble like sand when I would try to get them on the cookie sheet to bake. I added 1/4 cup butter and 2 more egg yokes and it was perfect (I used Large eggs, maybe with Jumbo, the 3 the recipe would have called for would be fine). I also followed other reviewers suggestions instead of using all lemon I did 1/2 of the lemon extract and zest and then the other 1/2 orange extract and zest. I had no vanilla rum, so I just mixed 1/2 rum and 1/2 vanilla. I used sweetened coconut, I think it tastes better. When I take something to parties, I like taking something different, usually something that I grew up eating, this time it was the alfajores and they were a hit! Thank you for the recipe.  -  23 Jan 2011  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)