Everyone is making pie and here I am making cookies. Because there’s no wrong time for cookies. Let me hear an “amen!”
I don’t dislike pie, but when I want something fairly predictable and easy to make, my answer is always a cookie. These Dulce de Leche cookies come courtesy of America’s Test Kitchen. I LOVE this show. I love watching the banter between the bakers/cooks. I love seeing recipes that give me confidence to recreate them in my own kitchen. And I love that they have cookbooks available with cookie recipes. That is all that’s in this cookbook. Well, aside from bars, brownies, no-bake, Christmas, and gluten-free, there’s tons of cookie recipes 🙂
The recipe called for Dulce de Leche, which I probably would have been able to buy had I gone to a Mexican food specialty store. But instead, I made my own. It is so dang easy people. Two cans sweetened condensed milk that turn into the dreamiest caramel mixture you’ve ever seen. It’s like voodoo magic that milk in a can turns into caramel.
All the other ingredients you should have on hand, so if the caramel sauce is the only thing holding you back, I suggest running to your nearest grocer and snagging a couple cans of sweetened condensed milk and pop those babies into your crockpot. I have never tested this using a pressure cooker, so I’m going from my experience of using a slow cooker. Throw them in at night and when you wake up, voila! caramel!
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For the dulce de leche:
- Remove labels from two cans of sweetened condensed milk. Place cans on their sides in a crockpot and cover completely with water. Make sure the water is at least an inch above the cans. Cook on low for 10 hours. Cool on a kitchen towel before opening. Can be used straight up in any recipe calling for caramel sauce.
For the cookies:
- 2 cups | 10 ounces all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground anise
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 16 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp
- 1 cup | 7 ounces granulated sugar, plus more for rolling
- 1 large egg, room temp
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon*
For the filling:
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground anise
- 1 –1 1/2 cups dulce de leche
To make the cookies:
- Adjust rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, salt, anise, and cinnamon together.
- Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and 1 cup sugar on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and vanilla and beat until just combined.
- Scrape bottom and sides of bowl and add in 1/3 of the flour mixture. Mix on low until combined. Scrape down sides and repeat with remaining flour until just combined.
- In a shallow dish, combine 1/2 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon.
- Using a small cookie scoop, roll dough balls in cinnamon sugar mixture and place on lined cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.
- Bake 10-12 minutes until edges are firm, rotating half way during baking. Cool completely on a wire rack.
To make filling:
- Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Add in spices and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in 1 to 1 1/2 cups dulce de leche.*
- Spread filling over half of cookies and top with remaining cookies.
This recipe makes a huge amount of dulce de leche, so start out by adding only a cup of it for the filling. I didn’t quite need all of the filling for the entire recipe.
You could also use store-bought cinnamon sugar mixture – which is the route I took. I have a jug I bought at the grocery store and keep in my pantry for when those cinnamon-sugar emergencies hit.