Puerto Rico: Mantecaditos

Historically, several countries have had an influence on Puerto Rican cuisine: Spain, Mexico, Africa and the United States.

Sweets are very much a part of the Puerto Rican cuisine, with custards, puddings and flans as some of the favorites. Mantecaditos are favorite cookies, particularly at the Holidays.

Mantecaditos (Almond Sugar Cookies)

2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
3/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
1-1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar
maraschino cherries, cut into eighths (optional)
shots, sprinkles or jimmies (optional)

Place oven rack in middle position of the oven. Preheat oven to 350 F.

Combine flour and nutmeg; set aside.

In a large bowl, beat butter, shortening and extracts with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add sugar to butter mixture and cream until mixture is light and fluffy. Blend in flour mixture.

Dough should be slightly moist. If dough looks dry, sprinkle with water and work into dough. If dough is sticky, sprinkle with additional flour.

Spoon dough by teaspoons and form into balls. Place on an ungreased baking sheet. Gently press each ball with palm of hand to form cookie. Garnish with a cherry piece placed in the center of each cookie or top with shots, sprinkles or jimmies.

Bake 20 minutes or until golden. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

Recipe adapted from Private Chef PR


scmom (Barbara) said...

You've been very busy lately! These cookies look really good.

Chef Mom said...

And they taste really good too! The holidays got very busy...I was baking...just not posting. I'll get caught up soon!

Jerri said...

interesting concept for a blog. you have great recipes here.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef Mom. My name is Nellmarie Pastry chef from Private Chef PR. You did a great job. We are glad that we can inspire you to do a good job.

God Bless
Nellmarie D Ortiz
Private Chef PR

Anonymous said...

this is really not a comment, its more like a question. when i've made these before, the end result is they are very hard once they have cooled down. Am I doing something wrong? I followed the recipe exactly like it is. Thank You...OLIVIA

Chef Mom said...

Olivia, If these cookies are too hard for you, try using more butter and less shortening. Also, cook them on a minute or so less than the recipe calls for. They'll harden as they're cooling. This may take a few tries, but you'll get the right recipe for you.

Anonymous said...

i need to make these for a school project, how many does this recipe make? i need to make 27 :)

Anonymous said...

This recipe looks great! I am actually doing a project on Puerto Rico and have to make a food for the class. This recipe sounds perfect! I can't wait to try it out and thanks for your help!