Tuesday, October 30, 2012

grandma's Christmas Cookie Recipe Contest - Seven Layer Rainbow Cookies by Katie

I'm very happy to share the second recipe in my Christmas Cookie Recipe Contest with you . . . Seven Layer Rainbow Cookies - sent to me by Katie Yaniak! Katie said, "I always look forward to the holiday baking season for months beforehand: dreaming, searching, plotting, and listing which ones we will make.  And we always end up making what is probably too many (can it really be too many if they are all eaten and enjoyed? Surely not.)  There are several which are among our favorites, but one I am sure to make every year is my Seven Layer Rainbow Cookies." This recipe looks like it would be a tasty treat to enjoy on Christmas - or any time! Bake up a batch to surprise and delight your family today! Thank you Katie for sharing it with us! (Voting will begin on Friday - November 2, 2012)


Seven Layer Rainbow Cookies


Ingredients
1 can (8 oz) almond paste
1 1/2 c (3 sticks) unsalted, softened butter
1 c sugar 
4 eggs, separated 
1 tsp salt 
1 tsp almond flavoring (extract)
2 c flour 
Green and Red food coloring
1 jar (12 oz) apricot preserves
2 1/2 squares semi-sweet choc (5 oz) (choc. chips)
Waxed paper

Instructions
Preheat oven to 350°. Grease three 13x9 inch baking pans. Line with parchment paper and grease again. If you only have one pan you will have to reuse it for each layer. 

Break almond paste up with fork in large bowl, be sure to break it up small or you will end up with chunks in the batter. Add butter, sugar, egg yolks, salt and almond extract. Beat with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add flour and blend well.  In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Stir egg whites into batter with wooden spoon using turning motion similar to folding.

Spread 1 ½ c of batter in 1st pan. Remove another 1 ½ c to small bowl and tint with green. Spread evenly in 2nd pan. Add red coloring to remaining batter and spread into 3rd pan (or divide the batter into thirds by weight, I found this to be more accurate).  I tend to go light on the coloring, but these can be as vibrant as you'd like.

Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes or until edges are golden. Layers will be about ¼ inch thick. Immediately remove cakes from pans to wire racks to cool. I let them cool a bit in the pan then I grab the parchment paper and lift the whole thing out to completely cool.

Heat apricot preserves in small sauce pan and strain half over the green layer being sure to bring to edges. Invert the yellow layer over the green and remove parchment paper. Spread remaining preserves over this layer and then top with red layer in the same manner. 

Carefully place the stack in between two of the pans, leaving parchment paper in between the cookies and the pans. Distribute several cans on the top of the topmost pan and refrigerate overnight or at least 8 hours. 

After the allotted time has passed, melt chocolate in top of double boiler. Take pan from fridge and remove the top pan and sheet of parchment paper. Spread a thin layer of chocolate on top. Let the chocolate set about ½ hour. Carefully place a baking sheet on top of hardened chocolate and turn over. Now you can put more melted chocolate on this side. 

When it is hard, trim the edges of the cake. Cut into rectangles or 1 inch squares. Whatever way you cut it they still taste delicious. Keep them refrigerated.

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