Neapolitan cookies are one of those traditional Italian cookie recipes that are really fun to make. Even though they take a bit longer because they are one of those rolled cookie recipes you are given a lot of choice and creativity for flavorings.
Neapolitan cookies start out with a basic sugar cookie dough - but here's where you get creative - you can combine flavorings. Or not even add flavorings.
For example the pink part - on the day I shot this photo - it was a day I didn't feel like flavoring the pink part. So, I just added the five drops of red food coloring. On other days, I've either added a hit of grenadine or marschino cherry juice. I've more focused on the "pink" color not a flavor. BUT you can add flavoring, and you can read about that in the section below.
To get the brown tone you pretty much need chocolate morsels. I mean, no one wants to try and mix up brown food coloring. I prefer milk chocolate morsels because I like the flavor it gives the cookie.
The white part of the cookie you can choose to add nuts, or not. Or you can use white chocolate. Or both white chocolate and nuts. Or None.
Neapolitan cookies are all about the looks. As long as you keep the ratios in the recipe and follow the procedure - you can get creative.
As far as keeping it true to our traditional Italian cookie recipes roots - we would stick with nuts such as walnuts or pistachios. And our flavorings would be vanilla or almond extracts. The pink part is kind of a toss up. Bottom line - you don't want any portion to over power the other. You want them to compliment.
If you have more questions about how to flavor your neapolitan cookies see the substitutions and FAQs in the section below. Thank you for stopping by -
* 1 egg
* 1 cup butter at room temperature
* 1 1/2 cups sugar
* 2 1/2 cups of flour
* 1 1/2 tsps of baking powder
* a pinch of salt
* ¼ cup milk chocolate melted (see optional ideas below
* ¼ cup of white chocolate melted (see optional ideas below)
* Red food coloring
* A few drops of cherry flavoring (so many options for this – see below)
* Blend the butter, sugar, and the egg until smooth
* In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking soda, and pinch (or two) of salt
* Add the flour mixture to your egg-sugar-butter mixture.
* Make sure and blend this well
* Divide the dough into 3 separate equal portions
* TIP: What I do is get out three cereal size bowls – and scoop with a spoon into each. I give it a good eyeball for equal parts and then add or subtract accordingly to each bowl.
* Add the melted white chocolate to one bowl and stir (if you are using it)
* Add the melted milk chocolate to another bowl (if you are using it - if you don't use morsels think real hard about how you are going to get a brown color!)
* And dash a few drops of red food coloring to the last bowl. (You can add the optional flavoring if you wish like cherry, strawberry or raspberry extracts, but don't add a lot. Err on the side of too little!)
* To get this to shape evenly - take out a loaf pan. Like one you make bread in.
* Put Saran in the bottom of the pan.
* Slap the chocolate dough portion in the bottom of that loaf pan and gently press
* Next, add the "white layer" on top of the chocolate - very gently press
* And last add your pink layer on top and gently press
* The loaf pan will help you get that uniform shape
* Now put your unique shaped dough back in the fridge. Cover it up with Saran. I’d say two hours is safe. (You are doing this to get the dough “sliceable”)
* After the dough is chilled - you can preheat your oven at 350 degrees.
* Pull the log out of the loaf pan - and cut it in half LENGTHWISE first. You will be left with two long halves.
* Now you are ready to slice your cookie for baking - make sure you slice at least a 1/4 inch - don't go any thinner!
* Bake for 8-10 minutes – but keep an eye on them. You want them to almost turn golden - but not quite.
* Because these are one of those rolled cookie recipes. I'd set aside at least for this fun project.
First, the whole flavoring part is so optional. It's more about the "pink" - so I use red food coloring. However, you CAN use a strawberry or cherry or raspberry extract along with the red food color drops - just gauge the amount of flavoring you want that portion of the cookie to have. I've used grenadine. You can use maraschino cherry juice too. Just be careful that the liquid doesn't get the dough too wet.
Nope. I use it sometimes. And skip it other times. The white is just another chocolate flavor (plus it gives me an excuse to have two bags of morsels to cook other stuff if I choose to!) In this particular batch of neapolitan cookies by looking at my photo you can see I used nuts - but another time I may not feel like it. It's really what you feel like. You can be real flexible here.
A couple things may of happened. Make sure your cookie sheets are cooled off. Don't ever in the history of ever add cookie dough on top of a warm or hot cookie sheet. That causes the butter in the cookie to spread first before you bake. The other thing - you may have sliced you cookies too thin. Make sure you have at least 1/4 of an inch slice :-)
Absolutely. But have variety - only add it to ONE of the dough portions. If you add it everywhere - it looses the punch of what you were trying to do.