February 11, 2022

Valentine's Day Italian Rainbow Cookies


Having grown up in Manhattan my friend Maria would rave about the delicious cookies and desserts she would get when she was a kid, but couldn't find in the Bay Area after having moved to California decades ago.  One of her favorites were rainbow cookies, also known as tricolor or seven-layer cookies that were sold at all the Italian bakeries.  I'd never paid much attention to rainbow cookies before because I was team black & white cookie (after watching that famous Seinfeld episode). Never one to pass on a delicious cookie I was open to giving them a try.
On a recent trip to NYC I made sure to get my hands on some rainbow cookies so that I could have a taste for myself.  Per Maria's recommendation I headed to Veniero's Pasticceria & Caffe, in the Lower East Side, who are famous for their rainbows.   While the cookies were delicious, at $22 a pound (cookies are sold by weight), I thought they were a bit on the expensive side.  When I got back to San Francisco I challenged myself to come up with a worthy replica.

I had made rainbow cookies once before, but because the results were less than stellar I never made them again.  Maria had success with this NY Times recipe and so I gave it a try.  With February 14th just around the corner I thought it was a great excuse to make Valentine's Day Italian Rainbow Cookies in pink tones.  
A word of caution though if you decide to make them: while the cookies taste really delicious, the process to make them is rather tedious and you end up with quite a lot of dirty dishes to contend with.  I don't see myself making rainbow cookies often, but I would definitely make them for holidays and special occasions.


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