Thursday, March 5, 2015

Baking Polvorones

I work at an elementary school with 4th-6th grade autistic children.  The sixth graders are currently doing country reports, where they pick a country and research it.  For extra credit, they were able to dress up in that country's native garb, or bring in some food from that country.

One of my boys is having a hard time a home--with deaths in the family, surgery for his mother, chronic illness for him--so to help out, I volunteered to make the treats to bring in for his presentation.  His country was the Philippines, so I decided to make polvorones.

I found a recipe from Pinterest, and it was pretty easy to do!

3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups powdered skim milk
2 cups white sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened but not melted

First, put the flour into a skillet over medium heat.  Cook for 20 minutes, stirring constantly, to brown the flour.


This was the trickiest part.  At first, the flour didn't change colors, so I was concerned.  But eventually, it took on a light brown color.  The smell was a bit strong--though not unpleasant.


The left is the browned flour.  The right is normal flour.

Next, put the flour in a mixing bowl and let it cool slightly.  Then, add the sugar and powdered milk.  Mix together.


Next, add in the butter.  Mix together with your fingers.  It will produce a very loose, grainy dough.


Apparently, this is normal, as the desserts are called "buttery, fragile and literally melt-in-your-mouth powdered candies."

Next, you need to compress the dough into shapes.  The recipe calls for a specific mold, but I just used mini muffin tins.


I used a spoon to shovel the dough inside, and then compressed it (like when you measure out flour into a cup).

Refrigerate for at least two hours.  Then, remove from the mold.


These turned out very, very tasty, BUT the consistency was so grainy!  It was a bit off-putting because it felt like a bunch of sand in my mouth.  I explained this to the kids before they ate, suggesting they take little bites.  Of course, the sixth grade boys saw this as a challenge and nearly half of them shoved the whole cookie into their mouths at once.  *sigh*  Either way, most of the kids enjoyed this treat.  I would definitely make them again, but probably add a bit more liquid (butter was the ONLY liquid in the recipe), to give it a more dough-like consistency.  And the polvorones were better tasting when chilled, so I kept them refrigerated until we passed them out.


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