We still love making them when we get together for family events and weekends. The great thing about them is that you can make them any size you like. Our mum used to make two versions:
1. Mini-Bites - a small Viennese Whirl baked with a chocolate drop on top - a perfect yummy mouthful, or two bites if you’re being dainty. Try eating them straight from the freezer - they taste fab
2. Long finger Viennese Whirls - for a much sweeter treat, we like these sandwiched together with chocolate buttercream and then dipped in dark chocolate. One really is enough
Here’s is an easy BBC Good Food Viennese Whirls Recipe - which is similar to our mum’s recipe - and the best thing is that you’ve got delicious homemade biscuits ready to eat in under half an hour. Beware though, they taste so good it’s hard to stop at one!
MAKES: approximately 30-40 mini-bites, or 10-15 larger rosette or finger sandwich biscuits
Preparation about 10 mins
Cooking around 15 mins
Extra time if making buttercream and sandwiching the biscuits together
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
A mixing bowl
An electric whisk or a wooden spoon
A metal spoon
A small sieve
A piping bag with a large star-shaped nozzle (we used a 3/4 inch nozzle)
Two baking trays - if you only have one, you can cook one batch and then the next
200g slightly salted butter - softened by leaving it out of the fridge for a while
50g icing sugar
2tsp vanilla extract/essence
200g plain flour
2 level tsp level corn flour
1/2 level of baking powder
Dark or milk chocolate drops (optional) - one per biscuit
75g Dark or milk chocolate melted (optional) - plus extra if needed
CHOCOLATE BUTTER ICING (optional)
200g icing sugar
100g butter - softened
A few drops of vanilla essence
Cocoa powder - 1 level tablespoon made into a thick paste with a little bit of boiling water (you won’t need much water - start with a couple of tablespoons) - and then cooled before adding
METHOD FOR VIENNESE WHIRL MINI-BITES OR FINGERS:
- Line one or two baking trays with greaseproof paper. If you haven’t got greaseproof paper, grease the tray/s with a bit of extra butter (we generally use a piece of kitchen towel to spread the butter over the tray). A trick our sister learned is to then sprinkle some extra flour over the tray, shaking off any excess flour - it really does stop the biscuits sticking!
- Heat the oven up to 160 degrees (fan oven), 180 degrees (if no fan) or gas mark 4
- Cream the softened butter, icing sugar and vanilla essence together in a mixing bowl - using an electric whisk or a wooden spoon - until light and fluffy.
- Fold the sifted flour, cornflour and baking powder into the mixture using a metal spoon or a spatula - to form a slightly sticky dough.
- Put the dough into a piping bag with a large star-shaped nozzle. (If you haven’t got a piping bag, you can cut a small corner off a plastic food bag and use that as your piping bag).
- Pipe the dough onto the baking parchment, leaving space between each biscuit as the dough will spread slightly as it cooks.
- Pipe the dough into little bite sized rosettes (about an inch in diameter or larger ones if you want larger biscuits or biscuits to sandwich together). Put a chocolate drop on the top of each biscuit before baking.
- Pipe the dough into finger-shaped biscuits . These need to be roughly the same length if you’re going to sandwich two together.
- Bake the biscuits for 12-15 minutes - until slightly browned and firm to the touch. They may take less time if they are smaller or more time if they are larger so just keep checking them. Switch the trays around in the oven half way through baking so that the biscuits cook evenly.
- Leave the biscuits to cool on the baking tray for a couple of minutes before moving them onto a cooling rack.
- If you’ve only got one baking tray, re-grease or re-line the baking tray once you’ve transferred the first batch of biscuits onto the cooling rack; then pipe and bake your next batch.
CHOCOLATE BUTTER ICING:
- While the biscuits are cooling, cream together the softened butter and sifted icing sugar using a wooden spoon or an electric whisk (this is messy, so add a little sifted icing sugar at a time if you’re using a electric whisk).
- Mix your chosen flavouring into the buttercream mixture as required - we love a few drops of vanilla essence and some cocoa powder mixture (cooled). Taste it to check whether any additional flavouring is needed.
SANDWICHING THE BISCUITS TOGETHER:
- When your mini-bites or finger biscuits are cold, spread some butter icing onto the base of one biscuit and put another biscuit on top to form a sandwich.
For an extra sweet finish:
- Melt some chocolate in a bowl and dip one end/half of each sandwich biscuit into the melted chocolate or use a metal spoon to cover one end/half with chocolate and place back on the cooling rack or on a plate while the chocolate sets.
- Adding buttercream AND chocolate makes the biscuits very sweet - though absolutely delicious. Try putting them in the fridge to chill before serving; then eat and enjoy with a cup of tea - yum
You can try adding a variety of different flavours to your Viennese Whirl dough, such as:
- Chocolate: add 50g of dry dark cocoa powder to the mixture when you add the flour, cornflour and baking powder
- Lemon: add some grated lemon zest and a teaspoon of lemon juice to your mix. Add more if needed.
- Almond: add almond essence instead of the vanilla essence/extract
BISCUITS SANDWICH FILLING OPTIONS:
For different buttercream flavours: omit the vanilla essence and chocolate powder mix and add a flavour of your choice instead, such as:
- Vanilla: add a few drops of vanilla essence to taste. You can pair this with strawberry or raspberry jam for an extra yummy filling
- Lemon: a teaspoon of lemon juice, or more to taste
- Almond: a few drops of almond essence, or more to taste
- Coffee: 2 level teaspoons of instant coffee powder dissolved in a small amount of water. Add a bit to the buttercream at a time until you’ve got the flavour you want.
Don’t like buttercream?
Whilst there’s something very satisfying about biting into a Viennese whirl and having the buttercream squidge out of the middle, not everyone likes buttercream. Either way, these biscuits are just as delicious:
- on their own
- dipped in chocolate
- with a chocolate drop on top (chilled or straight from the freezer)
Or filled with
- cream and jam
- cream and strawberries or other berries - which helps cut through the sweetness
Want a gluten-free option? Try substituting the flour with gluten free varieties
We hope you love these biscuits as much as we do .
Have fun baking
With love and hugs xox
Ps: the next two recipes we’ll be sharing are for biscuits you can decorate with kids/grandkids - another firm family favourite
Pps: check out our Mother’s Day gift guide
Ppps: remember to order your Mother’s Day Box of Hugs in plenty of time - we can send them in time for Mother’s Day and will add a “save me for Mother’s Day” sticker onto the packaging. Simply select Mother’s Day delivery at the checkout.