15 July 2012

Tea Time - Vegan Chocolate Dipped Shortbread

Hi, hello!
As we all know I have a dangerous baking addiction, and look for any excuse to bake a sweet treat! It was a co-workers last day on Friday so I figured I had a moral obligation to contribute to the occasion. I was looking for something easy, tasty, and cute, and stumbled across a pic a while ago of some very cute tea bag biscuits, so I thought I would give it a go! What follows is the simplest shortbread recipe ever.

Special Equipment;
Long knife/ruler
Rolling Pin
String/Cotton
Cardboard
Tape and or stapler

Ingredients;
1 c Nuttelex (or your vegan butter of choice)
2 c Plain Flour
1 c Icing Sugar
2 tsp Vanilla Essence
150g Vegan Chocolate (as mentioned previously, I use Sweet Williams Choc Chips)

Method;
Preheat oven to 180deg.
Line baking trays with baking paper (I used 3).
In a mixing bowl combine nuttelex, vanilla essence, icing sugar and 1 cup of flour. Mix until barely combined, then add the rest of the flour. I have a Breville 'Scraper Mixer' (in red 'cause it goes faster), and used it with a dough hook attachment, and it did all the hard work for me. Lightly dust a sheet of baking paper (to work on) and roll out the dough with a lightly floured rolling pin. You can do it in 2 batches to make it a little easier to handle. 
Next cut them into the shape you want, these don't spread or rise. To shape my tea bags I used a butchers knife (ironic I know) to trim the dough into a square, I cut the dough into strips the same width of a tea bag (roughly 4cm?), cut them to length, and trimmed off the corners for the top of the bag, Use a chop stick/tooth pick to poke a hole into the top centre to tie the string. Using a metal spatula I slid the biscuits onto baking trays, and baked for approximately 10 mins each. I did some for longer than others with mixed reviews, some liked them just done - melt in your mouth, others liked them crunchier. 
Pull the biscuits out to cool and finish off remaining batches.

Once the biscuits have cooled, melt chocolate (I do it on the stove top) and dip each biscuit into the chocolate, ensuring the bottom half is completely covered. Shake off as much excess chocolate as possible, and then pop back onto the baking paper so the chocolate can set. 
Whilst the chocolate is setting, prepare the string & tags for the tea bags. Cut cardboard into small squares and decorate. Cut the string to size, staple or tape it to the tag, and poke through the holes of the biscuits.



End result is edible tea bags that are almost TOO cute to eat. Almost. Luckily they are irresistibly yummy and got devoured in seconds. These guys were a huge hit at work, and everyone commented on how cute they were! Regardless of whether you make plain choc dipped shortbread cookies with this recipe or go the whole 9 yards and make the tea bags, these biscuits are definite crowd pleasers.

Enjoy!

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