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cashew nuts (unsalted) - 1 cup, crushed
flour - 2 Tablespoons
heavy cream - 3 Tablespoons
caramel dulce de leche - 2 Tablespoons, bottled, store-bought
egg yolks - 4, beaten well
egg whites - 4
granulated sugar - 1/2 cup, separate 1 Tablespoon for beating with egg whites
unsalted butter - 1/3 cup melted
fluted paper cups - 45 to 48 pieces, measuring 1-inch diameter, for lining muffin pans
confectioners' sugar - 2 Tablespoons, for sprinkling (optional)
candied dried fruits or dried cherries - 1 to 2 Tablespoons, for topping (optional)
Preheat the oven at 350 degrees. Prepare and line a mini muffin tin with small sized fluted paper cups about one-inch in diameter.
To crush the whole cashews, place in a resealable plastic bag and pound with a mallet. Or for fast results, use a food chopper or processor. Put the cashews aside.
In a medium mixing bowl, mix together the dry ingredients: cashew, flour, sugar. Set aside.
Beat the egg whites till stiff and no bubbles are showing. Add the 1 tablespoon of sugar.
Meanwhile in the mixing bowl, to the dry ingredients, add the following: melted butter, cream, dulce de leche and egg yolks. Blend and incorporate everything well.
Gradually fold by hand the cashew and yolks mixture into the egg whites. Blend well.
Pour a tablespoon of the batter into tiny fluted paper cups lining small muffin tins. Batter should fill only ¾ of the cup.
Bake at 350 F degrees for 15 minutes or till top is golden brown.
When done, remove from oven. If desired, sprinkle the top of the petit fortunes with confectioner’s sugar using a fine sieve or colander. Optional – top each cup with 1 or 2 pieces of candied dried fruit. Allow the Petit Fortunes to cool, wrap in colored cellophane paper and pack in pretty baskets or decorative jars for gifts.
Storage: You can make these ahead, cool them thoroughly, and then wrap in plastic resealable freezer bags or airtight plastic containers. They can be kept frozen for 2 to 3 weeks.
Elizabeth Ann Quirino, based in New Jersey, is a journalist, food writer and member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP). She blogs about Filipino home cooking and culinary travels to the Philippines on her site AsianInAmericamag.com.
More articles by Elizabeth Ann Quirino