While most mothers associate Mother’s Day with bouquets of roses and breakfast in bed, the owner of Andina restaurant, Doris Rodriguez de Platt, views the holiday as a day to make the traditional Peruvian butter cookies called alfajores. “It’s the way I spend Mother’s Day, and it’s the way mothers spend the day in the region where I come from in Peru.
In the small cities and towns, children come to visit moms, and moms wait for them with a nice meal that includes alfajores,” says Platt, who brings her hometown traditions to life at the Portland, Oreg., restaurant. Alfajores are traditional South American sandwich cookies with Spanish and Moorish roots. In Platt’s hometown, home cooks use key lime juice and a spoonful of the nation’s famous Pisco to enhance the cookie dough; they then sandwich the crisp, round cookies around a creamy dulce de leche (caramelized milk) filling and dust them liberally with powdered sugar for a festive finish.
In Peru, alfajores appear on Mother’s Day although the mothers are the gift giver, not the recipient. “One of the best ways to show that we love our children and families and relatives is cooking for them,” Platt says.
Recipe by Doris Rodrigues de Platt