Sweet, buttery, melt in the mouth Viennese Whirl biscuits sandwiched together with a chocolate truffle filling; these are perfect for a special occasion and would be a great alternative to cake. You’d never guess how simple these are to bake just by looking at them!
Sometimes, I just don’t fancy cake. There, I said it! Sometimes something a little more sophisticated, a little less sweet does the trick. And just like there is a cake for every occasion, the same can be said for the humble biscuit… right the way from a rough and ready chocolate chip cookie to these splendid Viennese Whirls. They look so impressive, so time consuming, so “did you really make these at home?!“, but they are so so simple! In texture, these biscuits are like an extremely short shortbread. A very buttery texture, they drift away in the mouth (because to even suggest melt would make them sound too heavy!) leaving behind a sweet buttery taste – yes, even without real butter!
These are Chocolate Viennese Whirls; unlike their familiar counterparts which are usually filled with jam and buttercream, they are less sweet, slightly more rich, and far more decadent. The chocolate filling is simply melted chocolate, then mixed with butter and caster sugar. I was surprised at the addition of caster sugar, but the texture of it really works and compliments the smooth biscuits with the smallest amount of pleasant crunch. And if you have some filling left over, you can roll it into balls and coat in cocoa powder for a quick and easy chocolate truffle! I found this recipe a long long time ago in You magazine, and had it hoarded away in a pile marked ‘to try’. I’m so glad I did. The recipe was perfect and the only tweak I made was to the cooking time – I found mine needed a little longer in the oven to completely dry out, which is important as this is what gives them their lighter than light texture. The trick to the shape of these fancy biscuits is a piping bag and nozzle. This might make you shy away in horror – but trust me, this is not a recipe where you need to have piping skills! The nozzle does all the work for you; pipe any shape you want and with a slightly damp finger, smooth over any edges you want to hide. If this really does fill you with fear, pipe some practice shapes onto a plate until you’re happy, then scoop the dough back into the piping bag to make your final biscuits.
If you don’t want to go as far as making the filling you can simply melt the chocolate and dip the biscuits in, as I did with some of mine – or, even easier, use a dairy free chocolate spread thickened with a little cocoa powder or icing sugar to sandwich them together! Makes 12 sandwich biscuits. Takes 25 minutes plus baking and cooling time.
Recipe adapted from You Magazine.
- 250g dairy free butter
- 60g icing sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
- 220g plain flour
- 75g cornflour
- (Tip: this makes a generous amount of filling – Roll the rest into truffles! If you plan on making a mix of sandwich and chocolate dipped biscuits, only make half the filling, then melt the remaining chocolate to dip the biscuits in)
- 100g dark chocolate
- 60g butter
- 60g caster sugar
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (160 fan).
- Line a large baking tray with baking paper.
- Making sure your butter is very soft (not usually a problem with these dairy free margarine type butters!) beat the butter, icing sugar and vanilla together until pale using an electric mixer, then beat in the flours for a minute or two until combined and smooth – don’t overmix, we don’t want too much air in there.
- Use the dough to hold your baking paper in place on the tray – put a small blob of dough in each corner, then smooth over so the paper is stuck down and taut. (Tip: If you don’t do this, you’ll find it very very difficult to pipe onto the paper!)
- Fill a piping bag with a large star nozzle (or another other shaped nozzle of your choice) and pipe 24 small swirls each about 5cm across.
- Chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 15 – 18 minutes, without letting them get brown.
- When baked, leave the biscuits to cool on the parchment for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to completely cool – try not to overcrowd on the rack as you want the biscuits to dry out and not steam.
- As the biscuits are cooling, start the filling by melting the chocolate. When fully melted, remove from the heat.
- Add the butter and sugar to the chocolate and beat until fully incorporated and smooth.
- Once the filling is cooled and spreadable, use to sandwhich two swirls together, and then serve.
To make the chocolate dipped Viennese Whirls:
- At step 5, pipe the dough into figure of 8s.
- Chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Bake for 20 – 22 minutes, without letting them go brown.
- Cool as above.
- Melt the chocolate, and either dip one half of the 8 into the chocolate, or use a spoon to drizzle on top.
- Leave on a wire rack until the chocolate has set.
To make the truffles:
- With a small teaspoon of the chocolate filling, roll into a ball with your hands, then generously coat in cocoa powder.