WEEK TWO – BISCUIT WEEK
Vanilla and Raspberry Viennese Whirls
From the original recipe by The Hairy Bikers! Ohhh my i have never made these before but they were so nice, I am sure I will make them again; and amazingly sweet considering the biscuits themselves don’t contain a lot of sugar. I am really glad i managed to find an hour to bake these, as I did not think I would be able to join in with this week as I will be off to my first, yes FIRST music festival this week- don’t know whether that’s ‘sad’ at my age, but rest assured it’s a sedate food and family affair too with lots of local cooks doing demos, and some of the countries top organic and natural food companies there too. So looking forward to relaxing for a few days, with yoga by the lake, organic wine and sausages by a camp fire and dancing under a moonlit sky! Big thanks to my parents for house, pet and poultry sitting! (So sorry Dad, I know these are your favourites, but there’s none left!)
250g/9oz very, very soft proper butter
50g/2oz icing sugar
250g/9oz plain flour
½ tspn vanilla extract
a little food colouring (optional)
100g/3½oz soft butter/buttery spread
200g/7oz icing sugar (sieved)
Seeds from ½ vanilla pod (see tips!) (Optional)
small jar raspberry jam (or any flavour you favour!)
- Preheat oven to 190/170ºC fan. Line 2 large baking sheets with baking parchment.
- Take butter out of the fridge like hours before you need it! Whip the butter and icing sugar together in a mixer on high speed (or with a hand held) until it is soft, light and fluffy.
- Add the flours and vanilla and give it one quick mix/blitz to blend everything together to a soft paste.
- Put a large star nozzle into an heavy duty icing bag (maybe try a little twist as I have done here by applying a small amount of colour to match the jam, onto the sides of the bag with a long paintbrush, you can just about make this out in the photo here) then simply scoop the batter in. Pipe this in even whirls onto the parchment – you should get 24 – 30 from this mix, leaving a small amount of room for them to spread a little.
- Pop the trays into the fridge for 10 mins to refirm the butter to prevent spreading in the oven. Then bake them for approximately 12 – 15 minutes, until firm and just turing golden on the edges.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking trays, as they will be soft and crumbly and prone to breaking if you remove them too soon. Once they are cooled gently move them with a slice or biscuit lifters onto cooling racks.
- For the filling, place the butter in a mixing bowl and beat a little to soften, add the icing sugar and beat together. Add a pinch of vanilla seeds and stir in. Put into an icing bag with a small star nozzle.
- Place a small teaspoon of jam in the centre of a whirl (on the flat side), pipe little rosettes of butter icing around it in a circle then simply sandwich another biscuit on top!
TIPS – I can’t stress enough how soft the butter needs to be before piping, I am blessed to have a softening setting on my microwave so I used this and had no issues with it being too firm.
I like to use a bag clip on my icing bags when doing something heavy duty so it stops stuff leaking out of the wrong end (easily done when you have arthritic hands). You could maybe add a little food flavouring into the bag along with the colour too for an extra kick, or maybe add some freeze dried raspberry into the paste.
Why not try some different styles, like long thin biscuits or as i have done with some of mine here, 3 conjoined rosettes.
Here is a top idea for vanilla pods, really expensive right, so why throw the pod away???? I have a fine herb blitzer (most food processors have this attachment these days, or a cheap coffee grinder will do) that I simply put the whole pod into and whizz down to a fine powder and keep in an airtight jar ready to use just a little pinch of as the pod themselves have almost as much flavour in as the seeds and you virtually triple the amount of vanilla ‘seed’ by doing this!
Phew that’s this weeks’ bake and blog done, and these little mouth melting moment of joy disappeared before the day was out! I would have over to have made some of my favourite ‘iced’ biscuits for you too, melted snowmen and reindeers (using gingerbread men cutters) but i think you will have to wait until nearer the Christmas season for those as I now have to go get my packing done!
If you too want to join in with the Great Bloggers Bake Off then join us do; for how to and what to check out Jenny’s blog at mummymishaps.co.uk .