“The classic flag cookie: it says everything about the neighbourhood and Mulberry Street,” says chef Mario Carbone. “It was originated by Italian immigrant communities in the US who wanted to pay homage to their mother country.” You’ll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.
- 300 gm caster sugar
- 450 gm softened butter
- 6 eggs, separated
- 400 gm plain flour
- 1 tbsp each red and green food colouring
- 250 gm marmalade
- 250 gm dark chocolate (72% cocoa solids), finely chopped
- 200 gm almond meal
- 125 gm icing sugar
- 1 egg
- 1To make almond paste, process almond meal and icing sugar in a food processor until combined. Add egg, process to combine and set aside.
- 2Preheat oven to 160C. Beat 340gm almond paste and sugar in an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until smooth and combined. Add butter a little at a time, and mix on low speed until creamy (2-3 minutes). Add yolks one at a time, beating well to incorporate each yolk before adding the next.
- 3Meanwhile, sift flour and ½ tsp salt onto a piece of baking paper, add gradually to almond mixture, mixing to just combine, then divide among 3 large bowls (approximately 420gm per bowl) and set aside.
- 4Whisk eggwhites to medium-stiff peaks in an electric mixer and divide among the 3 bowls (60gm per bowl). Add red food colouring to one bowl and green to another, leaving the third bowl without colouring, then fold each mixture with a spatula to combine. Spread each colour into a separate 24cm x 31cm baking tray lined with baking paper, smoothing top with spatula. Bake, swapping trays frequently, until cooked evenly and just set; cakes should look a little glossy but not jiggly (8-10 minutes). Cool completely in tins.
- 5Meanwhile, heat marmalade with 1 tbsp water in a small saucepan over medium heat until spreadable (6-8 minutes).
- 6To remove cakes from tins, run a paring knife around edges, then invert red and white cakes onto separate clean pieces of baking paper, shaking off crumbs. Invert green cake onto a flat tray lined with baking paper, then spread with half the marmalade. Carefully slide white cake onto green cake, using the baking paper as a guide (see note), then spread with remaining marmalade. Slide red cake onto white cake, then cover with baking paper and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Evenly weight cake with 1kg of flat food packets and refrigerate until compressed (4 hours-overnight). Unwrap and place on a board.
- 7Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Spread half the chocolate on top of cake. Return cake to refrigerator until just set (15 minutes). Re-warm remaining chocolate if necessary, carefully turn cake over onto a tray lined with baking paper, cover top with chocolate, then refrigerate until almost set (10 minutes). Carefully cut into 6cm x 2cm pieces and serve. Cake will keep for a week refrigerated in an airtight container.
The cake is quite crumbly to work with so using baking paper will make it easier to slide the layers on top of one another.
This recipe is from the March 2012 issue of
Drink Suggestion: Pink moscato Drink suggestion by Max Allen