Friday, 15 February 2013

Napolitaines [Mauritian Recipe]

Napolitaine [pronounced as Na-Po-lee-ten] is a classic Mauritian biscuit [similar to shortbread] which consists of two cookies with a thin layer of red jam in the middle and then sandwiched together and finally coated with a light pink icing. For my version of it though, I will be using a little darker pink colour and made them in heart shapes to spread the love on Valentine's Day!

For a little bit of history, Napolitaines featured and I think still features amongst the cakes that are given to students of primary and secondary schools alike on the National Independence Day which is on the 12th of March. I must absolutely relate that I never picked one, I usually went for the classic Tarte à la Banane or the Puit D'amour cake. The reason behind it I suppose is just that the coating was too sugary or maybe euh..it was just ME!

But I can say this version of mine, is more soft and melts in the mouth! I found the jam a little bit sweet [despite it being a suitable for diabetic one!]. So consider tasting the jam if you don't use it daily wise or  using it for the first time before spreading onto the biscuit!

Happy Valentine's Day to all the couples out there!




Happy Napolitain-ing!



Equipment:

  • Kitchen Scale
  • Measuring Spoons
  • Oven
  • Stove
  • Double boiler/Bain Marie
  • Cookie Cutter
  • Cooling Rack

Ingredients:
  • 250g of all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 140g of softened butter
  • ±50 g of raspberry jam (or any other red jam)
  • 250g (2 cups) of icing sugar 
  • 5 tbsp of cold water
  • 3-4 drops of red food colouring (or as needed)

Method:
  • Cut the softened butter into cubes, or evenly spread onto the all purpose flour.




  • Rub the flour, using your hands, and incorporate into the flour until a soft dough is form. Do NOT knead the dough. Just Rub.
  • If the you find the dough a little bit dry, do NOT add water but add a little bit more butter.
  • Let the dough rest for 30 minutes, covered with cling film.
  • Sprinkle some flour onto a work surface and roll out dough into 1 cm thick.
  • If the edges have cracks, just patch it up by pushing the dough inwards, just like you would gather bits spread here and there. And gently press down with your fingers to 1 cm thick.
  • Preheat oven to 160˚C/320˚F. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Cut the dough using a cookie cutter of ±1.5 inch in diameter. [Here, I am using a heart-shaped cookie cutter]




  • Place the dough onto the baking tray.
  • Set tray in the middle position and let bake for 20-30 minutes. Watch out as not to let the biscuits brown. They should go slightly golden but not brown.
  • Allow cookies to cool before removing from baking tray and placing on cooling rack, they might not easily detach from the paper and break. [I've used a silicone baking sheet, so I easily transferred the cookies onto a cooling rack.




  • Repeat the same for the rest of the dough. As for the bits and pieces that remain, roll them again and shape. And bake!




  • You should have around 30-32 cookies in all.
  • Now that the cookies have cooled, to half of the cookie batch, that is onto 15 cookies, spread a ¼ of a teaspoon of jam in the centre. 




  • If you made heart shapes like me, from the centre, spread the jam across the curves of heart, leaving a few millimetres from the edge, which will be covered when you sandwich the other cookie on top!
  • Now, using a plain cookie, press onto the cookie with the jam. Set aside onto a cooling rack.
  • Beneath the cooling rack place a bowl or plate to collect the icing coating which will remain after drizzling over the biscuits.
  • Prepare your icing coating, by putting the icing sugar, red food colouring and cold water in a bowl set over a bain-marie/double boiler.




  • Let the sugar melt. When it reaches the right consistency, that is, shiny, thick and uniformly coloured, remove from the bain-marie/double boiler.
  • Using a spoon, drizzle the icing coating onto the biscuits, which will set right away.
  • If the coating hardens, just put it back to the double boiler and heat for a min or two. 
  • Once the icing is set, remove the-now Napolitaines and devour!
  • You can store the Napolitaines in an air-tight container. I do not recommend refrigerating it as the coating will lose the shiny colour and the texture of the biscuit will also be affected.


Happy Eating!



6 comments:

  1. thank you for the receipe.

    ReplyDelete
  2. thanks for this receipe i'm from france and sometimes wants to eat a good Napolitain :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. thanks for this receipe, l'm from France and sometimes missing Mauritian Napolitains :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for dropping by Stephanie ;) If you're trying it sometimes, let us know how it turns out!

      Delete
  4. very interesting receipe you have shared
    i will try this at my Restaurants in delhi

    ReplyDelete
  5. I've eaten them but necer baked them myself. I'm giving it a try ! Thanks for the recipe and the nice pics :)

    ReplyDelete

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