Venetians / Rainbow Cookies / Tri Color Cookies

Venetians / Rainbow Cookies / Tri Color Cookies by Bakewell Junction

Venetians / Rainbow Cookies / Tri Color Cookies by Bakewell Junction

I’m sharing a delicious recipe that I made a few weeks ago.  This Christmas my friend Chris sent over her cookies and they were unbelievably delicious.  She agreed to give me her recipe and they turned out wonderfully.

My prior attempt to make Venetians with a different recipe a few years ago didn’t turn out well at all so I hadn’t tried another recipe until now.  My husband and I won’t even eat these if they’ve been purchased because they just don’t taste good.  I can hardly believe how delicious these are.

Although there’s some extra steps in assembly, these cookies aren’t really too difficult to make.  I did learn some things while making this recipe.  My Apricot preserves had some apricot chunks in it and I should probably have removed the chunks (although there were no complaints, mind you).  My almond paste wasn’t broken up evenly and it didn’t incorporate evenly into the cake (again, no complaints).  I’ve added tips at the end of the recipe so you won’t run into the same things.

I hope you try this recipe because you will get what I call the “wow factor”.  When you serve these cookies, anyone that tries them will say wow.  So do you like these cookies from the Italian bakeries?  The cookies have so many names, what name do you use?

Enjoy!

Venetians / Rainbow Cookies / Tri Color Cookies

Yield:  48 or 64 cookies (depending on cut)                  Cook Time:  15 minutes

  • 8 ounces Almond Paste (I used the Odense 7 ounce tube)
  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 4 tablespoons almond extract
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 12 drops red food coloring
  • 12 drops green food coloring

Icing and Filling

  • 1 12 ounce jar apricot preserves
  • 1 – 2 Special Dark Chocolate bars (I used a combination of Lindt and Ghirardelli)

Directions:

Step 1:  Spray 3 13 by 9 by 2 baking pans with cooking spray, line with wax paper and then spray the wax paper with cooking spray too.  I didn’t have three pans of this size, so I prepared my cakes one at a time.

Step 2:  Break apart almond paste until it looks like grains of sand and no lumps remain.  Step 3:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine almond paste, butter, sugar, egg yolks and almond extract.  Beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.  Add flour and salt. Mix until combined.  In another bowl, beat egg whites until stiff.  Carefully fold into the batter.

Step 4:  Take 1/3 of the batter (about 1 1/2 to 1 1/3 cup) and add 10 drops of green food coloring.  Using a folding motion mix the food coloring throughout the 1/3 portion of the batter.  Add additional drops as needed to reach the color you want.  Spread the green batter as evenly as possibly in the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes until the edges become light golden.

Step 5:  Take 1/3 of the batter (about 1 1/2 to 1 1/3 cup) and add 10 drops of red food coloring.  Using a folding motion mix the food coloring throughout the 1/3 portion of the batter.  Add additional drops as needed to reach the color you want.  Spread the red batter as evenly as possibly in the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes until the edges become light golden.

Step 6:  Take the remaining 1/3 of the batter (about 1 1/2 to 1 1/3 cup) and spread as evenly as possibly in the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes until the edges become light golden.  Cool all three cakes completely.

Step 7:  Warm the apricot preserves in a bowl in the microwave at 30 second intervals while stirring between intervals.  Heat for a maximum of 1 1/2 minutes.  Place wax paper on a cookie sheet and then the green layer.  Spread 1/2 the apricot preserves on the green layer.  Place the untinted layer on top of the green layer.  Spread the remaining apricot preserves on the untinted layer.  Place the red layer on top of the untinted layer and cover with wax paper.  Place another cookie sheet on top of the layers and place weight on top.  Chill everything overnight in the refrigerator.

Step 8:  Remove the cookies from the refrigerator and remove the weight.  Cut the edges of the layers so there are clean edges.  The cut pieces are great for snacking.  Carefully melt the chocolate in a double boiler or the microwave.  Spread the chocolate on the top and sides of the cookies.  Let the chocolate dry.  Turn the cookies over and spread chocolate on the bottom also.  Let the chocolate dry.  Turn the cookies over and cut into 8 by 8 pieces or 6 by 8 pieces.

Storing:  Store cookies in a sealed plastic container.

Tips:

  • Breaking up the almond paste can best be accomplished by breaking it into 1 inch by 1 inch cubes and using a food processor, mini chopper or blender to break it up completely.  If you don’t have access to any of these, you can use a grater to break it up.
  • When the apricot preserves are heated, you can remove any large apricot chunks before spreading.  Heating the apricot preserves allows the preserves to soak into the layers and cling together better.
  • To cut the layers into pieces, carefully use a sharp serrated knife.  Have the layers placed with the long edge closest to you.   Run the knife under hot water and dry it.  Cut the layers in eight slices (if you want larger cookies, make 6 slices) along the long edge of the layers.  To minimize cracking in the chocolate, start cutting in a sawing motion with the warm knife until you break through the chocolate; then press down until the knife cuts through to the bottom of the layers and chocolate.  You will likely need to repeat running the knife under hot water after four slices.  Turn the pieces that look like long narrow logs sideways.  Repeat running the knife under hot water.  Using the same sawing motion to get through the top layer of chocolate and then pressing down to cut through to the bottom of the layers and chocolate, cut each log into 8 pieces.  You will likely need to repeat running the knife under hot water for each log you cut.  Plus if some of the chocolate cracks, then you have a great snack.
  • Making these a few days ahead of time allows the flavors to meld and they taste even better.

Enjoy!!!

Recipe adapted from my friend Chris.

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12 Weeks of Christmas Treats ~ Almond Crescent Cookies

I’ve joined the blog hop 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats hosted by Brenda Thompson from MealPlanningMagic.com.  If you’d like to join us, please fill out the form on Brenda’s blog.

To start off the twelve weeks I’ve made these Almond Crescents from a recipe that my friend and neighbor had given me after she gave us some of these cookies last Christmas.  The recipe is easy to make, the cookies are lovely and have a great presentation.

The chocolate and green frosting drizzle is great for Christmas.

Almond Crescent Cookies

Yield:  48 crescents                 Cook Time:  8 minutes

Ingredients

Cookies:
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 egg yolks
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
2 1/2 cup all purpose flour

Drizzle:
1/2 cup semi-sweet or milk chocolate baking chips
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon water
green or red food coloring

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Cream butter and 1 cup powdered sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment.  Mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy.  Mix in egg yolks and almond extract.  Reduce speed to low and and gradually mix in flour.
  3. Shape the dough into crescents about three inches long and half an inch thick.  Place formed cookies on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 8 minutes (the cookies will barely change to golden on the bottom).  Do not over-bake as this will dry out the cookies.  Let cookies cool completely before adding drizzle.
  4. To make the chocolate drizzle, melt the chocolate and drizzle over the cookies.  To make the icing glaze, mix the powdered sugar with the water.  Add drops of water to reach the right consistency to drizzle over cookies.  Add green food coloring for Christmas.

Cookie recipe adapted from neighbor Marla.

12 Weeks of Christmas Treats Blog Hop

Week 1, September 27, 2012

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Almond Heart Cookies

I wanted to bake cookies for Valentine’s Day but I also wanted to try an Almond Crescent Cookie recipe that my friend and neighbor had given me.for Christmas.  Two crescents facing each other could become a heart shape.  So I modified the recipe a bit and they turned out delicious.

The chocolate and red frosting drizzle is great for Valentine’s Day.  Who doesn’t love chocolate or red drizzle for Valentine’s Day?  Your favorite Valentine will thank you for making these for them.  From my heart to yours – enjoy!!

Yield:  24 heart cookies or 48 crescents                 Cook Time:  8 minutes

Ingredients

Cookies:
1 c butter, room temperature
1 c powdered sugar
2 egg yolks
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
2 1/2 c all purpose flour

Drizzle:
1/2 c semi-sweet or milk chocolate baking chips
2 t powdered sugar
1 t water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Cream butter and 1 cup powdered sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment.  Mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy.  Mix in egg yolks and almond extract.  Reduce speed to low and and gradually mix in flour mixture.
  3. Start by shaping the dough into crescents about three inches long and half an inch thick.  Then form the crescents into heart shapes.  Place cookie dough hearts on prepared baking sheet and bake for 8 minutes (the cookies will barely change to golden on the bottom).  Do not over-bake as this will dry out the cookies.  Let cookies cool completely before adding drizzle.
  4. To make the chocolate drizzle, melt the chocolate and drizzle over the cookies.  To make the icing glaze, mix the powdered sugar with the water.  Add drops of water to reach the right consistency to drizzle over cookies.  Add red food coloring to signify Valentine’s Day.

Cookie recipe adapted from neighbor Marla.