Mantecados and polvorones are part of our most traditional and beloved Christmas sweets, as long as they are of good quality. The artisan character is noticeable, and a lot, in these delicacies with a simple soul, for which there is no single recipe. Thus we find specialties such as the danielitos de Cónchar that have made the small town of Granada famous with their puff pastry sweets , between shortbread and puff pastry.
The Dulces Caseros Daniel workshop has been tempting neighbors and visitors with its products for several generations, but for a long time they have devoted almost exclusively to their great specialty, the spontaneously baptized as Danielitos by the clients themselves. With a traditional mantecado base, Daniel López, the uncle of the current owner, introduced the almond into the dough one fine day and thus acquired its final shape.
Production in the old workshop begins in October and not until the beginning of January, when the Christmas festivities end, and they only share space with the anise rolls. They say that their only secret is the quality of the ingredients, the wood oven and the artisan character to which they remain faithful after the passage of generations, because their ingredients have no mystery: flour , Iberian lard, wine, almonds and sugar.
Unfortunately we have not been lucky enough to be able to try the genuine Danielitos de Cónchar, but while we wait for that to change, we delight ourselves at home with Carmen’s recipe in Sunday’s desserts. Very simple at best, we really like the idea of not adding any sugar to the dough to leave that sweet touch exclusively to the double batter, giving prominence to the soft puff pastry and the almond .
Toast the almonds lightly over medium heat in a pan, just until they begin to release aroma , without letting them take on much color. Cool and chop roughly but leaving them practically whole, better if done with a knife.
Arrange the butter in a container and beat it with the wine, until obtaining a smooth cream. Add the flour little by little ; when half has been added, add the almonds. Continue mixing until you get a soft, pliable dough, not too sticky, and knead on the work surface. Wrap in film and leave in the fridge for at least one hour.
Preheat the oven to 200 ºC with heat up and down without air. Roll out the dough leaving a minimum thickness of 1 cm or a little more, and cut using a square or rectangular mold, not too big. Spread on a tray with non-stick paper and bake some minutes , until golden brown.
While preparing a container with plenty of icing sugar and a wire rack. With the danielitos still hot, coat them quickly and carefully, leaving them on the rack. Once cool completely, sprinkle with more sifted icing sugar.
With what to accompany the Danielitos Exquisite on their own with their tasty flaky texture and the rich crunchy almonds, this kind of ice cream will triumph After dinner with a coffee , a mulled wine or punch without alcohol, or even a homemade liquor. For the afternoon snack they are also a good temptation that at home we like to accompany with mandarins, and we can always serve them on a tray with other related sweets, such as wine rolls.
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