Friday, August 28, 2009
Strawberry Agua Frescas and Alfajores (aka Dulce de Leche Sandwich Cookies!)
Swimming goggles. My new best friend. You really do make a difference. I can see under water! How ‘bout that?
I’m trying to swim more. Besides being a full body workout, the weather is warm and the pool is cold. Go take a dip in the pool and cool off.
It was hot at 9 am. It is hot at midnight.
Strawberry agua fresca. You are my savior in this extreme heat wave! I want nothing but to quench my thirst with your smooth, slurp-me-up refreshing vibes. Strawberries, water, and a touch of sugar. Nothing fancy—blend and serve over ice.
If you do not have strawberries, use any fruit of your choice—melons, berries, citrus...
Strawberry Agua Fresca
1 basket of (organic) strawberries
¾ cup of sugar
1 quart of water (roughly 4 cups)
1. Wash and take off the green top of the strawberries.
2. Put the strawberries and the water in a blender and blend until smooth.
3. Add the sugar and blend for a moment more.
4. Put ice cubes in a glass and pour in the strawberry agua fresca.
5. Gulp, gulp, gulp!
Dulce de leche. Literally “sweet milk.” You have a similar consistency and taste as caramel. You work wonders drizzled in ice cream and spread on baguette (the French call it “confiture de lait”). Today you are the gooey filling nestled between two crumbly butter cookies sandwiched together to make an alfajor.
Alfajores are commonly seen in Latin American counties (Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Mexico…) and Spain. They are often dusted with powdered sugar (sometimes cinnamon or cocoa powder, too!), rolled in grated coconut, and/or dipped in chocolate.
David Lebovitz’s easy recipe for dulce de leche is a must!
adapted from nook&pantry
1 - 1 1/4 C AP flour
1/2 C corn starch
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 C sugar
1 stick of butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Dulce de leche (store bought or homemade)
Powdered sugar, cinnamon, and/or cocoa powder (optional)
Freshly grated coconut (also optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. In another bowl whisk together the flour (starting with 1 cup), cornstarch, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
3. Add the egg and vanilla to the butter and beat until smooth. Add the dry ingredients and beat until the dough comes together. Add some of the remaining 1/4 C of flour if the dough is too wet.
4. Roll out the dough to about 1/8 in thickness and cut into whatever shape you desire. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the edges are light golden brown.
5. Cool on a rack.
6. To assemble, slab a thick layer of dulce de leche on one side of a cookie and top with another cookie.
7. Dust the tops with some powdered sugar (add a tiny bit of cinnamon/cocoa if preferred). Dip the sides in freshly grated coconut so that the white flakes stick to the dulce de leche.
**I skipped the dusting part and just went straight to the eating part! Be prepared for a crumbly mess of gooey goodness!