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A decision to make cookies with my kids during Quarantine led to a family business and a global award

As the days passed after that first batch of cookies sold, the orders from the community grew. Our barbecue area became a production line. In time, when the Pandemic ended, we put together a work team. We purchased equipment and formalized the project.

  • 4 months ago
  • January 15, 2023
4 min read
Andreína and her children entered their Triple Chocolate alfajor in the Alfajores World Cup Championship and took second place Andreína and her children entered their Triple Chocolate alfajor in the Alfajores World Cup Championship and took second place | Photo courtesy of Andreína Tomassini
Interview Subject
Andreína Tomassini of Concordia, Argentina used the COVID-19 quarantine to setup a baking project with her kids. A mistake in the quantity of ingredients during their first attempt to make alfajores (Latin American sandwich cookies) led to a larger than expected batch. They began selling the extra cookies and gaining orders. Eventually, the family started a business called La Maga to make and sell alfajores.

In 2022 they took second place in the first ever Alfajores World Cup Championship. Their winning cookie was called “Triple Black,” an alfajor with three layers of dark chocolate, filled with dulce de leche.
Background Information
The first Alfajores World Cup Championship took place in August 2022. About 150 manufacturers from all over the world participated, with 350 samples competing for the prizes and recognition. Approximately 8,500 people bought tickets to the event and 45 prizes were awarded. The 12-member journey included chefs, influencers, producers, entrepreneurs, and journalists. The competition received 5,000 applications.

In Latin America, the alfajor is a sweet dessert of Spanish origins. It is a traditional delicacy in Latin America and spread in America during the colonial period.
 The dessert gained relevance in Argentina, due to its filling with the traditional Creole dulce de leche.

CONCORDIA, Argentina ꟷ I started making alfajores [Latin American sandwich cookies] with my family during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Our little project became an award-winning business called “La Maga” or the magician.

It all began when my children and I decided to make sweets during quarantine. As we cooked in the kitchen, I looked out the window. With the Pandemic in full swing, the streets laid empty and quiet. As we enjoyed the kitchen in our new house, my youngest daughter made a mistake with the quantity of ingredients.

Read more stories at Orato World Media about visionaries doing innovative and inspirational work around the globe.

We ended up creating a much larger batch of alfajores than we anticipated. I had to decide what to do with them. With the entire country on lockdown, we could not go near our neighbors so we put a sign on the door: “Alfajores for sale.” The response surprised us. We began selling cookies and more orders came in.

A family home becomes a business incubator during the Pandemic

Every morning when we awoke, we heard the birds singing, the crickets chirping, and toads croaking outside. Far from the center of town, we loved to live this way in our new home. The kitchen connected to all the main living spaces and became a common gathering area for the family. Large, comfortable, and spacious, it filled us with warmth and connection. Outside, we could see a paradise of trees and earth.

On the patio, natural aromas wisped about under the sun. The Pandemic confined us there, so we began creating fun projects to pass the time. I wanted my children to experience love, passion, and a commitment to finishing tasks. Baking alfajores felt like magic, so we named the project “La Maga.”

As the days passed after that first batch of cookies sold, the orders from the community grew. Our barbecue area became a production line. In time, when the Pandemic ended, we put together a work team. We purchased equipment and formalized the project. In doing so, I left behind traditional work hours and offered employment opportunities to people in my town.

Turning a Pandemic project into a budding family business

As the company grew, we got word of the first-ever Alfajor World Cup Championship in August 2022 [a juried competition to recognize the best alfajores from around the globe]. We decided to enter our triple black alfajor.

In one of the happiest moments of my entire life, we took second place in the competition. My children jumped up and down with joy. In my acceptance, I thanked my kids because they played the protagonists in this adventure. It never would have happened without them.

The Triple Chocolate alfajor from La Maga that took second place in the Alfajores World Cup Championship | Photo courtesy of Andreína Tomassini

Meeting others who are passionate about alfajores filled me with happiness. A sentimental and passionate person, tears fell down my face as my emotions overflowed. Reflecting on the process from that first day when I made cookies with my children in the kitchen, I felt a deep sense of gratitude. We sowed the seeds of all that effort when we won.

Taking second place for the world’s best alfajores makes me feel like a millionaire – rich and strong. Even more significant, I get to share the win with my kids. As a result of our recognition, the city of Concordia’s Deliberative Council named me “an outstanding person.” Yet, the prize that made me happiest was seeing my son’s face during the ceremony. He watched me with pride and his emotions came to the surface that day. That was the best reward of all.

Translation Disclaimer

Translations provided by Orato World Media are intended to result in the end translated document being understandable in the end language. Although every effort is made to ensure our translations are accurate we cannot guarantee the translation will be without errors.

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