Steam-Baked Italian Rainbow Cookies
Ali Clarke and Santos Loo
January 30, 2024
Italian rainbow cookies are a tradition going back many years in our home for the holidays. This is one recipe we thought couldn’t be improved upon, but with the addition of a little steam from the Anova Precision Oven, we’ve done the unthinkable and made the cookies even more tender and delicate. Rich yet light in texture, they have almond, fruit, and chocolate flavors in every bite. They are perfect for those of us who really can’t decide if we want a cookie or cake for dessert; in fact, you can serve this dessert as a cake if you’d like instead of slicing it into individual cookies! We have made one update, which is to use natural food coloring. We know the colors aren’t quite as bright as the ones you find in your local Italian market, but they taste exactly the same and are equally beautiful. If you are looking for the more classic look, the recipe will work just as well with regular food coloring.
Notes: Any natural food coloring will work for this recipe. Sometimes natural green food coloring is harder to find; in this case you can mix equal parts of yellow and blue.
If you don’t have three 8-inch square pans, you can use two. Fill two cake pans and bake as directed, placing one pan on the left side of the higher rack and one pan on the right side of the lower rack. After baking, wash, re-grease, and re-line the pan with parchment before filling and baking the final layer.
This recipe uses Diamond Crystal kosher salt.