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Yes, I’m still alive…

March 29, 2010

…and will post on my Texas trip this week, I promise. I’ve been busy, people – work, houseguests, trips to the Homeland (or the Mothership…). But in the meantime, here are some pictures of a delicious delicacy my friend Kenda just brought back from her recent trip to Peru:

Alfajores!

Alfajores…wow. OK. Honest admission time. Often, the treats my friends bring from foreign lands do not live up to the hype. Yes, they’re wrapped in adorable wrappers with fascinating foreign writing on them. Or they might make use of an ingredient I’ve never heard of. Or boast an unpronounceable name which I then practice to myself, over and over again, until I can say it with enthusiasm when someone passing by my desk sees me eating something bright pink and chewy (“Oh this? It’s just a aszxkciefholw…I eat them all the time. It’s from XYZ country. What’s it made of? I have no idea.”) and impress them with my international flair.

But in reality, I’ll eat one or two, then foist the others off on unsuspecting coworkers, with the promise of “Oh – these are great! They’re from XYZ country!!!” (But this should not deter you from bringing me sweets…I always appreciate sweets.)*

These puppies, though? The alfajores?

These guys?

Mine. All. Mine.Thanks for playing, but paws off.

First, there’s the cookie. Soft, crumbly texture, so tender and just sweet enough. Then, there’s the coconut. Not on all of them, just on half. I like coconut, but only half of the time, so these fit perfectly. And finally? Finally. And finally as in “FINALLY the perfect cookie!” finally…the real, honest-to-goodness dulce de leche.

Now people, this is not some piddly “caramel sauce” with a Spanish accent. This is truly decadent, hours-to-make, dulce de leche which involves simmering milk and sugar until it becomes thick, caramelized, and delicious. I’ve often considered making dulce de leche from scratch (because buying it in a jar seems unthinkable), but I know how long it takes, and since waiting for bread to rise takes too long for this Cupcake, simmering and stirring for three hours is completely ridiculous.

But wow. This stuff is so good! They’re making me rethink my decision, folks, and as soon as I can figure out how to make a cookie as perfectly tender and sweet as these were (not likely to happen in this universe) I will replicate them for all my friends to enjoy.

These cookies are the mini-versions of the alfajores which are available all over Peru (and many other Spanish-speaking countries – don’t you love how cuisine follows language and culture like that?) and come in this adorable little box from the Casa del Alfajor.

I have to agree. They most definitely are Simplemente Delicioso.

I’m really impressed with how well they traveled (can you see the grease marks from the butter in the cookies? Mmmmmm), so if you’re ever in the neighborhood, pay them a visit, and bring me a box.

K that’s all for now – have a good week! It’s raining in DC so we’re trying to stay upbeat. Gosh, guess I’ll just have to have another cookie! And clearly I’ll have one for dessert at lunch. Oh – and a meeting at 3? I definitely need a cookie before I go (got to keep those energy levels up!). And for afternoon tea break. And for right before happy hour. No wait…my box is empty!? Travesty. Guess I’ll just have to send Kenda back to Peru.

THANKS, KENDA!!!

*Note: this does not apply to any foreign sweets posted on this blog. I only post the good stuff, peeps.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. March 30, 2010 8:50 am

    Oh! I’ve had those before and they are so delicious! I’m officially jealous.

  2. Lisa's Dad permalink
    March 31, 2010 10:39 am

    They can’t possibly beat your toll house chocolate chip cookies for cookieness!!!!!!

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