Alfajores de maicena

We absolutely love alfajores in Argentina. Usually they are cookies which we sandwich together with dulce de leche (or other fillings!) and cover in chocolate or meringue. Today’s alfajores are very different though!

Maizena is the most well known brand of corn flour in Argentina and the word has become a synonym of cornflour in Argentina. These alfajores are predominantly made with corn flour and not plain flour hence the name – cornflour alfajores!

I have many memories of making alfajores de maicena with my mom as a kid and no wonder – alfajores de maicena are so simple to make, it is a perfect recipe when baking with children!

Due to the cornflour cookies being more crumbly than usual cookies, alfajores de maicena melt in your mouth and are absolutely delicious. The cookies have a very delicate lemony flavour and are amazing when sandwiched with dulce de leche and rolled in desiccated coconut!

How do I make these AMAZING alfajores de maicena?

  • Soft unsalted butter: You certainly want the butter to be at room temperature so that it can mix with the sugar well!
  • Caster sugar: You can use granulated sugar if needed however caster sugar makes the cookies much more delicate.
  • Egg yolks: You only need the yolks of the eggs however do not throw the egg whites away as you may need to add a bit if the dough is not joining well. This may happen if your eggs are not large enough and you need more liquid.
  • Vanilla extract: Only a small amount is needed but make sure you use a good brand to add the lovely vanilla flavour
  • Lemon zest: The lemon zest adds a lovely delicate flavour however a 1/4 of a lemon zest is enough as you do not want the lemon zest to overpower the flavours.
  • Corn flour: You cannot have alfajores de maicena without cornflour!!
  • Plain flour: Although corn flour is needed, you still need plain flour to make these amazing alfajores! Do not use self raising flour as you will add a bit of baking powder and bicarbonate of soda flour.
  • Baking powder and bicarbonate of soda: You will need to add a bit of both to ensure the cookies rise (but not too much!!)
  • Dulce de leche: You definitely need to use a GOOD dulce de leche. I would suggest using a baking dulce de leche such as the one you can buy here.
  • Desiccated coconut: The combination of dulce de leche and coconut is extremely popular in Argentina and no wonder – it goes beautifully together!

RECIPE

This recipe is extremely generous as it makes 45-50 alfajores de maicena! You can always freeze some of the baked cookies and defrost when you want some last minute snacks! If not you can easily half the recipe!

Ingredients

  • 200g soft unsalted butter
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 egg yolks (keep the egg whites!)
  • zest of 1/4 – 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g plain flour
  • 300g corn flour
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 400g dulce de leche at room temperature
  • 200g desiccated coconut

Instructions

To make the cornflour cookies:

  1. Using an electric whisk, beat the soft butter and the sugar together.
  2. Beat one egg yolk at a time until all three egg yolks have been added. To this, add the vanilla extract and lemon zest.
  3. Sift the dry ingredients (corn flour, plain flour, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder) into the wet ingredients. Using a spatula, start to mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
  4. Once the dough has started to form, tip the dough on a clean surface and use your hands to join all the ingredients together. If the dough is not joining together due to a lack of wet ingredients, add a tiny amount of egg whites to help you join the dough together.
  5. Cover the dough with cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes
  6. After the cookies have chilled for enough time, start preheating the oven to 180 degree Celsius.
  7. Remove the dough from the fridge and in a well floured surface, slice the dough into slabs and roll thinly.
  8. Using a cookie cutter (mine had a diameter of 4.5cm but you can use different sizes!), cut the dough into cookies and place each cookie with a baking tray covered with parchment paper.
  9. Bake the cookies in the oven for 10 minutes (until just about golden!)
  10. Once baked, remove from the fridge and allow to cool!

To make the alfajores de maicena:

  1. Join two cookies with plenty of dulce de leche and gently press. Make sure the dulce de leche is at room temperature so it is easier to use!
  2. Shuffle the alfajores in desiccated coconut so that the edges of the alfajores are completely covered in it!
  3. Make a cup of tea and ENJOY! 🙂

This is an absolute classic in Argentina and I am so so happy to be sharing this! Cannot wait to hear your thoughts!

Buen provecho 🙂

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