Traditional during the end of year holidays, we like to serve these at special
occasions year round.
This festive “cookie” is really a cake. Like many classic petit fours, Neapolitans
are thin layers of rich butter cake sandwiched with jam. Almond Paste in the batter
keeps the cake moist for a week or more at room temperature, a month or more when
Don’t be daunted by what appears to be a complicated cake. Now that smaller baking
sheets (9 x 13 inches) are available, it is easy to make uniform shaped layers.
Divide the work into two stages. Make the cakes and layer them on one day. Ice and
cut them another. A rich chocolate coating is traditional in bakeries where these
Rainbow Cookies are sold. Chocolate fudge icing would also work well.
1 (10-ounce) can Love’n Bake® Almond Paste
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3 1/2 sticks (14 ounces) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
6 whole eggs, separated
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
Green and red food coloring, as needed
2 cups raspberry jam
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped or chocolate chips
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line three 9 x 13-inch baking sheets with
parchment paper. Grease the edges of the pan. Set aside.
Spoon the Love’n Bake® Almond Paste into the bowl of a food processor. Add the
sugar and process until the mixture is evenly blended.
Cream the butter and the almond paste mixture in the bowl of a mixer fitted with
the paddle attachment until fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks and almond extract. Stir
in the flour on slow speed. The mixture will be very stiff.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they hold soft peaks. Stir one
third of the whites into the batter to lighten it. Then fold in the remaining whites.
Divide the batter evenly into three bowls. Using a scale will ensure that each
pan has an equal amount of batter. Tint one batch a pale green and the second a
pale pink using the food coloring as required. (4 to 6 drops of liquid coloring
works well.) Leave the third batch plain.
Spread each batch of batter evenly into each of the prepared pans. Use an off-set
spatula to spread out the stiff batter into an even layer.
Bake the cakes on the center rack in the oven until set and just lightly brown
around the edges, about 8 to 12 minutes. Invert the cakes onto a wire rack to cool.
As soon as the cakes are cool enough to handle, remove the parchment paper. Slide
the green cake layer onto a half-sized baking sheet lined with plastic wrap. Spread
the cake with a thin layer of the raspberry jam. Place the plain cake layer on top
of the jam-coated layer then spread it with another layer of raspberry jam. Place
the pink-tinted layer on top. Spread this top layer with more raspberry jam.
Cover the cake with plastic wrap. Place a baking sheet on top of the cake and
weight it with some cans then place in the refrigerator overnight.
To frost the cake, place the chocolate and vegetable oil in a bowl set over simmering
water. Allow it to melt stirring frequently until the chocolate is smooth.
Uncover the cake and coat it with the melted chocolate. Using a decorating comb
or fork, draw parallel lines on the surface of the chocolate. Allow the chocolate
to cool and harden. Cut the cake into 4 even strips. Then cut each strip into uniform
pieces measuring about 1-inched each.
Rainbow or Neapolitan Cookies with a Marzipan Layer: Before frosting
the cake, place the contents of one can of Love’n Bake® Marzipan on a work surface
lightly dusted with powdered sugar. Roll the marzipan using a rolling pin dusted
with powdered sugar out into a 9 x13-inch rectangle. Carefully transfer the marzipan
sheet on top of the pink cake layer. Proceed to coat the cake and cut as described
Yield: about 4 dozen cakes
Recipe and photo credit: Love'n Bake® - ingredients from American Almond Products