Friday, December 19, 2008

Seven layer cookies

I have a problem. I have to bake delicious things all the time. This wouldn't be much of a problem if I could remember to bring them to work, or to go to the post office and send them to people, but I don't. So I end up eating most of these things I bake. I keep promising myself that I'll get rid of them each time I make something new ("I'll make these to bring to work!") and then I forget, or they're not perfect, or not beautiful, or I ate too many. I need rehab. 
Anyway, here is another cookie recipe for Christmas, just in case you haven't seen (or made/eaten) enough. Deb over at Smitten Kitchen made these, as found in Gourmet, and I couldn't resist. I mean really, look how beautiful they are! I hadn't had these in years and years, and forgot how dense they are and so I got worried when I was baking them, but they're perfect. Don't eat too many of them. They have a lot of butter. 

Seven Layer Cookies

4 large eggs, separated
1 c sugar
1 (8 oz) can almond paste
2 1/2 sticks butter, room temperature
1 t almond extract
2 c rice flour mix
1/2 t xanthan gum
1/2 t salt
25 drops each red and green food coloring
1 (12 oz) jar apricot preserves, heated and strained
1 c dark chocolate chunks
2 T cream

Preheat oven to 350. Line a 13x9 pan with parchment paper, and butter the paper. Alternately, use a silicon pan liner. 
Beat egg white with a whisk attachment of a stand (or hand) mixer until stiff peaks. Sprinkle 1/4 c sugar and continue beating until glossy and stiff. Transfer to another bowl, then switch to the paddle attachment. Beat almond paste and remaining 3/4 c of sugar until well combined. Beat in butter until light and fluffy. Add yolks and almond extract and beat until combined.  
Turn mixer to low, and add flour mix, salt, and xanthan gum. Mix until just combined. Fold in 1/4 of the egg whites to lighten (it won't do much lightening) and then fold in the rest. If dough feels too thick to spread, fold in a tablespoon or two of milk. Divide dough into three bowls. Put 25 drops of red food coloring in one bowl, then 25 green in another. Spread red dough into prepared pan (will be thin), and bake 10-12 minutes until slightly firm and a toothpick inserted in comes out clean. Remove red layer to a rack to cool, prepare another sheet of parchment paper (or another silicon liner) and spread white layer as before. Bake, then repeat with the green. 
Once all layers are cooked and cooled, divide the preserves in half. Spread half of the preserves on the green layer, then lay the white layer on top. Spread that with the rest of the preserves, then carefully place the red layer on top. Cover with wax paper, then top with a heavy cutting board or cookie sheet, and refrigerate for 8 hours. 

8 hours later... Trim the edges (and then eat them). Melt the chocolate with the cream, stirring, either in the microwave or in a bowl over a pot of water. Spread half of the chocolate evenly over the green layer, refrigerate for 15 minutes until firm, then flip, spread the rest of the chocolate over the red layer, and chill another 30 minutes. Cut into 4 long strips, then cut into 3/4" wide cookies. If you don't want to eat them (or hand them out) you can freeze the strips for about a month. 


  1. Those are just too pretty! Love your blog, keep the recipes coming! :)

  2. Hello! I've just found your blog and it's AMAZING! Thanks so much for sharing your gluten-free creativity with us. I love these 7-layer cookies, they remind me of the small cafe around the corner from my sister's place in Astoria, NY! Can't wait to try them out. Gluten-free style. Thanks again :)

  3. They are gorgeous! So colorful and fresh looking!

  4. Anonymous12:16 PM

    Great looking cookies! I live in Philly too but haven't been able to find gluten-free almond paste. All I find is Odense brand, which contains wheat. Where do you buy yours?

  5. Molly-
    Solo brand almond paste is gluten-free, sold at Acme, ShopRite, and Genardis, I don't know where I bought mine from (I had it in hte cabinet for a while) but it's sold around here!

  6. Anonymous8:50 PM

    Thanks Jill! I'll look for it next time I'm at one of those stores. :)

    Really enjoy your blog.

  7. Thes cookies are gorgeous! I mentioned them in my blog, and linked to you. Hope this is ok!

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  9. Anonymous7:23 PM

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! Can we use light brown sugar? Or does this recipe call for white sugar?

  10. So excited! These are my FAVORITE cookies but I have a wheat intolerance, I can't wait to try this! thank you!

  11. Anonymous10:29 PM

    Jaw-dropping cookies! I also found this to be an incredibly forgiving recipe. I messed up the whole egg-white deal and pretty much just threw everything in together and beat it together. I also messed up the transfer of the yellow layer onto the red and kinda squished it back together and it was fine. For the flour I used 1 cup brown rice flour, 1/2 c tapioca and 1/2 c coconut flour. I skipped the refrigerating-for-8-hours part. I put the chocolate on one side and put it in the freezer for about 40 minutes, flipped it, put the chocolate on the other side, froze for about 30 minutes, and then sliced. Freezing made slicing really easy.