I’ve been baking along with this year’s Great British Bake Off and these are my current favourites – the technical challenge from biscuit week. Short, crumbly biscuits, tangy raspberry jam and rich buttercream. Very easy to make and perfect to go with a cup of tea!

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This is Mary Berry’s recipe with a few of my tips added (in italics).  For the original go here. The main change I’ve made is using ordinary sugar rather than jam sugar. Adding lemon to low pectin fruits (such as raspberries and strawberries) helps them to set. You’ll end up with a clearer conserve and I like the zestiness it gives too. This makes more jam than you’ll need – it lasts for a couple of weeks in the fridge and has served me very well on my toast in the mornings.

Ingredients

For the jam

  • 200g raspberries
  • 250g jam sugar or 250g caster sugar + juice and zest of a lemon

For the biscuits

  • 250g very soft unsalted butter
  • 50g icing sugar
  • 225g plain flour
  • 25g cornflour

For the filling

  • 100g unsalted butter, softened
  • 200g icing sugar, plus extra for dusting
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

Method

  1. For the jam, put the raspberries in a small, deep-sided saucepan and crush them using a potato masher. Add the sugar (and lemon if using) and bring to the boil over a low heat. When the sugar is melted, increase the heat and boil for a further 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and carefully pour into a shallow container. Leave to cool and set.
  2. For the biscuits, preheat the oven to 190C/170C Fan/Gas 5. Line 3 baking sheets with non-stick baking parchment. Using a 5cm/2in round cutter as a guide, draw 8 circles on each sheet of paper, spaced well apart. Turn the paper over so the pencil marks are underneath.
  3. Measure the butter and icing sugar into a bowl and beat until pale and fluffy (make sure the butter is very soft as this will help when it comes to piping the biscuits). Sift in the flour and cornflour and beat well, until thoroughly mixed. Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a medium star nozzle. Pipe 24 swirled rounds (not rosettes), inside the circles on the baking sheets.  Place in the fridge for 10 minutes to firm up as this will help the biscuits keep their swirl shape when cooked.
  4. Bake in the centre of the oven for 13—15 minutes, until a pale golden-brown. Cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes then carefully transfer to a wire rack to cool completely and harden.
  5. For the filling, measure the butter into a bowl and sift the icing sugar on top. Add the vanilla extract and beat with a wooden spoon or an electric whisk until very light and smooth. Spoon into a piping bag fitted with a large star nozzle.
  6. Spoon a little jam onto the flat side of 12 of the biscuits and place jam-side up on a cooling rack. Pipe the buttercream over the jam and sandwich with the remaining biscuits (take care, they’re very short and liable to break). Dust with icing sugar to finish.

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