Turrón de Doña Pepa

A layered, anise flavored, sprinkle covered sweet from Lima, Peru.
    Turron
    Nicholas Gill

    In Lima, Peru the month of October is called El Mes Morada, or the purple month, as this is when El Señor de Milagros, or the Lord of Miracles, a procession of tens of thousands of the faithful, dressed in purple, marches through the historic center of the city on select days. Forever tied to these processions is a layered, anise flavored, sprinkle covered sweet called Turrón de Doña Pepa.

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    Ingredients
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    4
    tablespoons
    anise seeds
    4
    cups
    all-purpose flour
    1
    teaspoon
    kosher salt
    1
    tablespoon
    sugar
    2
    teaspoons
    baking powder
    1/2
    cup
    butter
    1/2
    cup
    vegetable shortening
    5
    egg yolks
    1
    teaspoon
    vanilla
    1
    apple
    1
    lime
    1
    orange
    7
    ounces
    bag of prunes
    3
    cinammon sticks
    *
    dash
    salt
    2
    teaspoons
    cloves
    1
    teaspoon
    whole allspice (optional)
    1
    cup
    sugar
    1 1/2
    cups
    dark brown sugar
    1
    tablespoon
    molasses
    Directions
    Step 1
    Line an 8-inch square baking pan with 2 pieces of overlapped wax paper.
    Step 2
    Add 1 tbs of anise seeds to 1/2-cup water and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, then remove from heat and let cool. Toast the rest of the anise seeds at 300 degrees until golden and fragrant.
    Step 3
    Place the flour, salt, sesame seeds, anis seeds, sugar, and baking powder in a food processor. Add the cold butter and vegetable shortening, and process briefly, until sandy in texture.
    Step 4
    Add the egg yolks, vanilla, and anise extract and process briefly. Add the anise seeds and water (cooled) one tablespoon at a time, until mixture forms a dough. Wrap dough in saran wrap and chill for 1 hour.
    Step 5
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Step 6
    On a floured surface, roll out half of the chilled dough to 1/2 inch thickness. Trim the dough into an 8.5-inch x 8.5-inch square. Cut square lengthwise into 1/2-inch wide strips, and place them on a baking sheet. Repeat with other half of dough. Roll scraps as necessary.
    Step 7
    Bake cookie strips for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool.
    Step 8
    Working carefully, pour hot syrup slowly over the cookies, letting it soak into the cracks. Cover with candy sprinkles. Let rest for several hours, until completely cool.
    Step 9
    Lift wax paper to remove turrón from the pan. Slice turrón into desired pieces. Turrón will keep for several weeks in an airtight container.
    Step 10
    For the Syrup: Add 3 1/2 cups of water to a pot. Cut the apple, lime, and the orange into quarters and add along with the prunes, cinnamon sticks, salt, cloves, and allspice.
    Step 11
    Bring mixture to a boil, then lower heat and simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes, or until the apple is soft and translucent.
    Step 12
    While the fruit is simmering, assemble the cookies in the pan. Cover the bottom of the pan (lined with wax paper) with cookie strips layed side by side. Crumble one cookie strip and use the crumbs to fill in any holes between the strips.
    Step 13
    Make another layer of cookie strips on top of the first layer, but lay them down crosswise to the first one. Fill in any holes with crumbs. Repeat until all the strips are used, stopping with a complete top layer.
    Step 14
    When the apples are cooked and translucent, remove fruit and water from heat. Strain mixture into a colander. Discard fruit and spices. Add sugar, brown sugar, and molasses to the strained liquid, and bring to a boil. Boil until mixture reaches 240 degrees Fahrenheit. Syrup will form a thin thread when twirled from a spoon. Let syrup cool for 3-5 minutes.

    Nutrition Facts

    Serving Size: 
    Serving Per Recipe: 
    8
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    40 mins
    Prep Time: 
    10 mins
    Cook Time: 
    30 mins
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    The base number of servings for this recipe is 8
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