your oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Butter a 17 1/2 x 12 1/2 x 1
inch (44 x 32 x 2.5 cm) baking pan and line the bottom of the pan with parchment
almond paste in your electric mixer,
fitted with the paddle attachment, (or use a hand mixer) and beat until smooth.
Add the sugar and beat until thoroughly combined. Gradually add the butter and
continue to beat until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Beat in the vanilla
extract. Scrape down the sides of your bowl as needed. Add the eggs, one at a
time, beating until well combined. Finally, beat in the flour and salt.
the batter into your pan and bake for
about 15-18 minutes or
until lightly browned, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into the
center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire
rack to cool for about 5-10 minutes. Run a knife or spatula along the sides of
the pan and then gently slide the cake, along with the parchment paper, onto a
wire rack to finish cooling.
Next, trim the
edges of the cake with a sharp knife and divide the cake into three equal
pieces. Take one layer and flip it onto a baking sheet that has been lined with
parchment or wax paper. Peel off the parchment paper and spread the apricot
preserves evenly over the top of the cake. Take a second layer of cake and turn
it upside down on top of the apricot preserves. Peel off the parchment paper and
spread the raspberry preserves evenly on the top of the cake. Then take the last
layer of cake and turn it upside down on top of the raspberry preserves. Cover
the whole cake with plastic wrap and then place a heavy plate or
baking pan on top of the cake. This is done to compact the cake layers. Place in the refrigerator
to chill until firm (2-3 hours or even overnight).
Once the cake is
firm, remove from refrigerator, and using a 1 1/2 inch (4 cm) round cookie
cutter, cut into shapes (you can also cut the cake into squares, rectangles, or
diamonds). Place the mini cakes on a baking sheet, cover, and
place in the refrigerator while you make the White Chocolate Glaze.
Glaze: Put the white chocolate, butter, and shortening in a stainless steel
bowl. Place over a saucepan of barely simmering water and heat until smooth.
(Watch carefully as white chocolate can easily over heat.) Remove from heat.
Place your small
cakes on a wire rack that has been placed over a baking sheet. Using a small
ladle pour the chocolate glaze over the cakes, making sure that the glaze
completely covers each cake. If your glaze gets too thick, place it back
over the heat to thin it out. Any glaze that drips onto the baking sheet can be
strained and then it may have to be reheated. Place the frosted cakes into the
refrigerator for about 15 minutes so the glaze can harden and become firm.
Place the egg whites and lemon juice in a large bowl and whisk until frothy. Add
the sifted powdered sugar and mix until smooth. If needed, add a few drops of
water until you get the correct piping consistency. At this point you can add
food coloring to the royal icing. Place the royal icing in a pastry bag fitted
wth a small plain tip and decorate the tops of the cakes.
Store the Petit
Fours in a covered container in the refrigerator for about 7-10 days. They can
also be frozen for about a month. (If freezing, do not decorate with
the royal icing.) To defrost, place in the refrigerator for several hours or
Makes about 24 - 1
1/2 inch (4 cm) Petit Fours.