As Great British Bake off returns to our screens so does our weekly requirement for sweet treats. This show is impossible for my and Hubby to watch without cake or chocolate. Initially I decided to make triple chocolate cookies because…. Well you know….. Chocolate. But last minute I decided iced gems would be better.
Ok…. Ok…. I made both! Super greedy but so good.
Anyway the iced gems and how I made them. The biscuits are a simple vanilla biscuit I make all the time.
270g Caster sugar
400g Plain flour
1tsp Vanilla Paste
Cut the dough into any size or shape wanted, place on a baking tray lined with grease proof paper. Bake at 170 degrees for 10-15 mins (size dependant) until golden and firm.
Little trick: I use a couple of squirts of 1 cal fry lite spray on the baking tray to stop the paper curling up before the dough shapes are on it. This is especially useful when you get towards the end of the roll.
In this instance I didn’t have a round cutter small enough for what I needed. It’s my fault for making such last minute decisions. Never fear I thought a little outside of the box. I was going to use a shot glass or a large icing nozzle but I wanted to be able to extract the dough if it got stuck inside. I used the lid from an apple juice carton. The juice was nearly finished anyway. I put it in a chopping board and slowly cut through to leave myself with a little cylinder. It seriously worked!
Whilst the biscuits were cooling I made the royal icing. I make a lot of this and the recipe can be halved but it does keep for a couple of weeks in an airtight container. It will separate but with another good mix it will be good to go. If the container isn’t airtight the sugar will form crystals then you may as well throw it away. I’m not sure if these can actually be broken down, I have tried and given up before I succeeded.
1kg Icing Sugar
30g Albumin mixed as per packet instructions.
1tsp cream of tartar
Mixed for 20 mins. Honestly for this long!
Then coloured using sugar flair gel food colouring and thinned down to a stiff peak consistency. I used the Wilton 2d nozzle for a looser ruffled look.