These cookies are also called Venetians because the colors remind people of Venetian glass. Some call them Neopolitans. I love these Italian cookies! They are full of almond flavor and surprisingly easy to make.
One 8 Ounce Can Almond Paste
¾ Pound Unsalted Butter That Has Been Cut Into Small Pieces
1 Cup Sugar
4 Large Eggs Separated
¼ Teaspoon Salt
2 Cups Unbleached Flour
6 Drops Red Food Coloring
6 Drops Green Food Coloring
1 Cup Seedless Raspberry Jam
8 ounces Semisweet Chopped Chocolate
Preheat your oven to 350° F. Line three 13x9x2 inch baking pans with parchment paper. Crumble the almond paste into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter, ½ cup of sugar, the egg yolks and salt. Beat until light and fluffy. Add the flour just until blended. In another large mixing bowl (with clean beaters), beat the egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Gradually beat in the remaining ½ cup sugar and beat on high until the egg whites foam soft peaks when the beaters are lifted. With a rubber spatula, fold one third of the whites into the yolk mixture to lighten it. Gradually fold in the remaining whites. Scoop out on third of the batter and spread it evenly in one of the pans. It will be about ¼ inch thick. Bake for 10 minutes until the cake is just set and very lightly colored around the edges.
Next, scoop half of the remaining batter into another bowl. Fold the red food coloring into one bowl of batter and the green into the other. Spread the batter in the two remaining pans and bake as for the first layer. Let the cake layers cool in the pans for 5 minutes.
Transfer the cake layers to cooling racks, leaving the parchment paper attached. Let cool completely. Using the parchment paper to lift it, place the green layer paper side up on a tray. Carefully peel off the paper. Spread the cake with half of the jam. Place the white layer paper side up on top of the first. Peel off the paper and spread the cake with the remaining jam. Place the red layer paper side up on top. Peel off the paper. Wrap the cake in foil or plastic wrap. Place a weight such as a cutting board on top to compact the layers. Refrigerate the cake for at least 1 hour or overnight.
Place the chocolate in the top of a double boiler or in a small heatproof bowl. Place over a pan of simmering water and let stand, uncovered, until the chocolate is softened. Stir until smooth and then remove from the heat. Remove the weight and unwrap the cake. Pour the melted chocolate onto the cake and spread it smoothly over the top with a spatula, leaving the side uncovered. Refrigerate 30 minutes until the chocolate is lightly set. Using a ruler as a guide, cut the cake into 1 ½ x 1 inch rectangles. Store the cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Makes 6 dozen cookies