Iced Gem Biscuits

dairy-free iced gem biscuits Are there any biscuits as pretty as iced gems? The pastel hued crunchy iced top immediately draws the eye and nothing compliments a tea party more (whether real or for dolls) than a saucer full of these pretty little gems. I’ve always noticed my daughters looking on, with a hint of envy, when they’ve seen friends devouring these colourful little morsels – anything that pretty surely must taste divine too! vegan iced gem biscuits I’d always though a recreation would not be possible as royal icing was way out of my grasp – that was until aquafaba came along, and suddenly an icing that properly hardens was possible. I played with and tweaked a recipe after trying a few versions that are on the community Facebook page ‘vegan meringues, hits and misses’ and came up with a version that I was happy with, both taste and consistency-wise. The key to a good iced gem is to pipe the tops first onto baking parchment and let them fully dry for about 24 hours before sticking them to the top of the little shortbread cookies, then the effect will be just right. If you are happy for the icing to remain soft inside then pipe away, straight onto the mini- shortbread biscuits. I have to say I was mighty pleased with the results – they are even prettier than I imagined  (hence the overload of photos) and have been declared ‘heavenly’ so I think these may have to feature quite heavily in upcoming birthday party teas!

Iced Gem Biscuits

egg-free iced gem biscuits

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

makes more than 100!vegan iced gem cookies

for the shortbread:

225g plain flour

75g caster sugar

150g dairy-free margarine (I used Pure sunflower)

1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out or 1 tsp vanilla extract

50g granulated sugar, to sprinkle

  1.  Preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade/Gas Mark 4. Line a baking sheet with parchment
  2. Sift the flour into a bowl and stir in the sugar and vanilla. Add the dairy-free spread and rub in with fingers. Once it starts to combine, bring together to form a soft dough.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to 1cm thickness. Cut into tiny little circles.
  4. Place on the lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Then turn the baking sheet round and bake for another 10 minutes.
  5. Once the shortbread is golden brown remove from oven. Cool on the baking sheet, then move to a wire rack.min shortbread biscuits, dairy-free

for the royal icing:

4 tbsps aquafaba (water from a tin of beans or chickpeas)

1/2 tsp cream of tartar

4 cups icing sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

food colouring as desired

  1. In a stand mixer, or an electric whisk, whisk together all the ingredients until a smooth thick paste is created.
  2. Colour as desired. I split the mixture into three, and then coloured each with natural food colouring.
  3. Using a closed star nozzle pipe individual flowers onto lined baking sheets and leave in a cool dry place to harden. It will take up to 24 hours.egg-free, vegan royal icing

egg-free royal icing flowers to top iced gems to assemble:

  1. Using a think water icing, attach the flower tops to each mini shortbread circle. Leave to set.
  2. These keep beautifully for at least 1 week.

vegan, nut-free iced gem biscuits

Iced Biscuits using egg-free ‘Royal Icing’

Iced biscuits are cute, pretty and very popular with my children. The icing takes a simple roll out biscuit to another level and gives so many options for giving them extra character. The difficulty for us is that you need an icing that can easily be piped but sets hard and it’s quite difficult to get a suitably firm icing that is like royal icing but not containing egg.

This recipe is perfect for ‘flooding’ the top of biscuits – giving them a hard to the touch but soft on eating frosting. I’m not sure it would stand up to giving three dimensional details, more experiments will have to follow!

Iced Biscuits (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

makes about 18-20 small biscuits or about 12 large

  • 2/3 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup sunflower oil
  • 1/4 cup oat milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsps plain flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt

– Vigorously mix together the sugar, oil, vanilla and oat milk.

– Sift in the flour, cocoa powder, cornflour, baking powder and salt.

– Mix well to make a firm dough. Wrap in clingfilm and rest in the fridge for at least half an hour.

– Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade

– Unwrap the dough and roll out to between 0.5 and 1cm thickness. Cut out with a cookie cutter and transfer to a lined baking sheet.

– Cook for 8 minutes. Cool briefly on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack.

‘Royal Icing’ (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

enough to ice all the biscuits you just made!

  • 1 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 2tsps oat milk
  • 1/2 tsp liquid glucose
  • food colouring, as required

– Whisk all the ingredients together for a good few minutes until smooth and fairly thick

– Separate into as many bowls as colours you’ll require. Stir natural colourings into each and then place in piping bags.

– Using a piping bag with a fine nozzle, pipe on the border of the desired shape and fill in. For a spotted effect, pipe different coloured dots onto the wet icing.

– Leave to set for at least 12 hours, or overnight