7 layer cookies


Here is a colorful, rich cookie for dessert, especially good for Parshat Noach (rainbow) and Parshat Vayeshev (Joseph’s coat of many colors). It’s based on a Epicurious recipe with just a few tweaks and adjustments. It’s a lot of steps, but it’s not so much actual work, and it’s worth it. We served about half and froze the other half for another day.

  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 (8-oz) can almond paste (I found kosher in my regular supermarket, see photo below)
  • 1 1/4 cups parve margarine, softened
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • paste food coloring (I did red and green and left some white, but you could do any combo)
  • 12 oz jar seedless raspberry jam (won’t use the whole thing)
  • 8 oz parve chocolate chips

Oil a 13- by 9-inch baking pan and line bottom with wax paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on 2 ends, then oil paper.

Beat whites until they just hold stiff peaks. Add 1/4 cup sugar a little at a time, beating at high speed until whites hold stiff, slightly glossy peaks. Transfer to another bowl. (If you don’t mind a thicker, denser cookie, you don’t need to do this step, but I prefer it separated like this.)

Beat almond paste and remaining 3/4 cup sugar until well blended, about 3 minutes. Add margarine and beat until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add yolks and almond extract and beat until combined well, about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low, then add flour and salt and mix until just combined.

Fold half of egg white mixture into almond mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whites gently but thoroughly.

Divide batter among 3 bowls. Stir one (e.g. red) food coloring into one and second (e.g. green) food coloring into another, leaving the third batch plain for white (or add a third color). Set white batter aside. Chill green batter, covered. Pour red batter into prepared pan and spread evenly with offset spatula (layer will be about 1/4 inch thick, and will not rise or change shape much, so make it smooth).

Bake red layer 8 to 10 minutes, until just set and looks dry. (It is important NOT to overcook, so err on the less done side.)

Using paper overhang, transfer layer to a rack to cool, about 15 minutes. Clean pan, then line with wax paper and oil paper. Bake white layer in prepared pan until just set. As white layer bakes, bring green batter to room temperature. Transfer white layer to a rack. Prepare pan as above, then bake green layer in same manner as before. Transfer to a rack to cool.

When all layers are cool, invert green (bottom) onto a wax-paper-lined large baking sheet. Remove paper and spread with jam (spread a thin layer, a little less than half of the jar unless you prefer thicker jam layer, but then you risk cookie layers sliding). Invert white (middle) on top of green layer, discarding paper. Spread with jam as above. Invert red (top) layer on top of white layer and discard wax paper.

Cover with plastic wrap and weight with a large baking pan. Chill at least 8 hours, overnight is easiest.

Bring layers to room temperature. Trim edges of assembled layers with a long serrated knife if they are very uneven.

Melt chocolate in 25 second bursts in the microwave until smooth. Quickly spread half of chocolate in a thin layer on top of cake. Chill, uncovered, until chocolate is firm, about 15 minutes. Cover with another sheet of wax paper and place another baking sheet on top, then invert cake onto sheet and remove paper. Reheat chocolate if needed and quickly spread with remaining chocolate. Chill until firm, about 30 minutes.

With a thin knife that is wiped clean between each cut (and possibly even run under hot water between cuts to avoid cracking of the chocolate), cut lengthwise into 4 strips. Cut strips crosswise into 3/4-inch-wide cookies. (This is what the original recipe recommends, but I found these a little too big since this is a very rich cookie.)

Cookies keep, layered between sheets of wax paper or parchment, in an airtight container at room temperature 2 weeks. They freeze well as long as well wrapped.


About Amital

A die-hard listmaker and observant Jewish mommy of 5, managing the challenges of life bit by bit with the help of a Shalom Bayit book and lists. And chocolate, of course. Lots of chocolate.

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