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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Rainbow layer Cookies/Cake

This is my favorite holiday treat, especially more so as having been given the recipe many years ago by a co worker.It is a simple process but time consuming,and a long maturing wait (2-3 weeks).
 The end result is heavenly delicious ,rich with almond flavor,raspberry jam ,apricot jam and finnally a topping of dark chocolate.I must warn you, after having made this you will never be happy with the commercial store version,you will be spoiled forever!
 The process;
 Make almond paste; 8oz blanched almonds,whole or slivered (1+1/2cups)
 1+1/2 cup powdered sugar
 1 egg white
 1 tsp pure almond extract not artificial
 pinch of salt
 process almonds in a food processor till very finely ground,you may add 1/4 cup of the sugar to help processing.
When finely ground add sugar and process till combined, add egg white, salt, almond extract, process till it comes together.
 Remove from processor and wrap in plastic ,refrigerate till needed. You will only need half of this for the recipe.
Make sponge layers;
 pre heat oven to 350
 1 cup sugar
half of almond paste (about 8oz)
 1 cup soft sweet butter
 4 egg yolks
 4 egg whites whipped to firm, not dry peaks
2 cups all purpose flour sifted before measuring
10-12 oz of dark chocolate chips,  i use Gheridelli 60% cocao chips ( or what you prefer) 
8 oz jar of seedless rspberry jam
8 oz jar apricot jam
 In bowl of stand mixer or with hand mixer,blend together sugar,almond paste,butter,egg yolks,flour till smooth
Fold in egg whites till combined
Divide batter into 3 equal parts in seperate bowls
Add red food coloring to one bowl blend well
Add green to another, blend well
Leave 3rd neutral
Grease  3- 9x9 baking sheets ,if you have  ,or 9x 14, 10x15 . i used 3 9x 15 sheet pans
Place a sheet of waxed paper into each pan and grease paper also
Spread one color batter into a pan ONLY to 9" ,to make a 9x9 inch sheet, spread evenly using an off set spatula dipped in water if needed to help spread batter
 Bake 1 sheet at a time, 12-15 minutes till lightly brown on edges
Cool in pan on rack , let cool completely
Continue with the other 2 batters in the same manner

 When all 3 layers are cool,  leaving red layer in pan, spread raspberry jam  ( or apricot) on top of red layer ( put as much as you like)
 Invert neutral layer on top of red layer, peel off paper
Spread apricot jam onto neutral layer
Invert green layer on top of neutral layer-Leave pan on top of green layer
Place in refrigerator, put a weight on top of pan ,I use 2 bricks ,each in a plastic bag, or 2 large cans of tomatoes or 4 smaller ones etc. We want  the layers to compress a bit, leave over night.
 Next day or day after, remove from fridge, remove top pan . Invert onto a cutting board, trim all sides  straight and neat, EAT the trimmings! Melt chocolate chips over double boiler, of barely simmering water. Or in a glass bowl in microwave ,caution it is easy to burn chocolate in micro wave, heat for 30 seconds at a time, remove and stir between each heating till melted and smooth.
Spread chocolate over top and sides of layers, let chocolate set till dry.
NOW the Hard part...wrap entirely in plastic wrap twice to avoid off flavors and put back in fridge, let mature  at least 2 weeks ,IF YOU CAN RESIST.

Remove wrap  and slice with serrated knife into desired sizes  ENJOY !! 

I made 2  half sheet pans ( each is 3x13x18) for Christmas, double recipe for each sheet pan

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jim, is this an italian dessert-I think I have seen it before. Can you mail me one in the mail, I want to eat it!!!!