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Remembering Home: How To Make Argentine Rogel

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I have not visited Argentina, my country of origin, for a few years. When I immigrated to NY, I used to visit more frequently. But then the routine and the business responsibilities made it almost impossible. This time two and a half years went by. This trip brought me much joy and, at the same time, a bit of melancholy. This feeling is common among immigrants. Most who left their country of origin will inevitably have a similar feeling. The Argentinean singer/composer Facundo Cabral said it nicely: "I'm neither from here nor from there [...]"

My daughter loves our land. She is only 3 and half. I guess you never stop loving the land you were born and raised in; and you undoubtedly transmit all that love to your children.

This afternoon I was lucky to walk the streets of Buenos Aires. How beautiful it was to remember the smells and flavors! Obviously, the city has changed a bit: there was a slight metamorphosis. There are more modern buildings, new businesses, bars and restaurants. Its cuisine has evolved and modernized. However, I am immensely happy to see the classics and modern coexisting.

Today I want to share one of those classic desserts that have never lost its charm. This dessert is a great way to celebrate the holidays and start a sweet new year!

It is a popular dessert both because of its taste and simplicity. No need to be an expert to prepare it because of its rustic nature. Its layers are rather messy, dulce de leche and Italian meringue should not necessarily be perfect!

This dessert is very rich and popular throughout Latin America. This is my version of the Napoleon.

In Argentina, this delicious cake is known as Rogel.

You can find it in the most famous tea houses and is the "must" dessert in the best restaurants. Warning: It's a cake designed for those who have a very sweet taste.

Ingredients
300 grs of flour
5 egg yolks
2 eggs
50 grs butter
2 tablespoons of cognac
¼ tablespoon of vanilla extract
A Pinch of salt

Filling
Dulce de leche to taste

Italian meringue

220 grs of white sugar
90 g egg whites
½ teaspoon of juice of lemon
Pinch of salt

Preparing Rogel layer:

1. Beat the butter and add the flour
2. Add the cognac, egg yolks and whisking until the mixture becomes homogeneous.
3. Let the dough rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes
4. Pour a little flour on the bench
5. Pre-heat the oven to 400 F
6. Roll out the dough to a very thin layer
7. Cut out 8 circles (6 inches in diameter)
8. Place parchment paper on a tray and distribute the circles leaving a little space between them
9. Bake 7 to 8 minutes until they begin to take a little color
10. Let them cool
11. Spread dulce de leche on a rogel layer and place a second rogel layer on top
12. Add a second layer of dulce de leche, and place the third rogel layer on top. Make a total of 8 rogel layers
13. Decorate with Italian meringue
14. Brown lightly the meringue with a torch

Italian meringue preparation:

1. Beat the egg whites until you see some foam being formed
2. Make syrup with sugar and a little water until the soft ball stage 238°F/114°C
3. Add the syrup into the whipping egg whites
3. Add the lemon juice
4. Beat until the desired consistency is reached