These shortcakes are really fun easy and dairy free, but you can make them with butter if you prefer. Anyone can make them. All you do is mix the ingredients, bake them, dip in warm chocolate and leave to cool. They taste amazingly buttery even though there’s no butter in them. They are perfect as tree decorations if you make a little hole in them before baking so you can thread a ribbon or piece of string through to hang them up. I’ve tried these out on friends who can’t tell they are dairy free. You can also use any shape cookie cutter if you haven’t got this one.
Makes around 20 cookies, depending on the size of your cookie cutter.
1 cup of mild coconut oil (or butter if you prefer)
1/2 cup golden caster sugar
3 cups of plain flour (use white organic spelt flour) plus more for rolling out
zest of one orange
3 tablespoonfuls of ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon of salt
200g of dark chocolate
Firstly line a biggish baking tray with parchment paper or a silicon sheet. Set aside.
Mix the coconut oil and the sugar together in a mixing bowl or food processor. Add in the flour, salt, spices and mix together to form a dough. The dough might be a bit grainy, but it’s fine once it’s baked. Wrap in cling film and place in the fridge for half an hour to an hour to slightly firm the dough up.
Preheat the oven to 170c.
Roll the dough out to a thickness of roughly 1/2 cm. Choose your favourite cookie cutter and stamp out about 20 cookies, depending on the size of your cutter, I use a gingerbread man, and place them on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for about 12-14 minutes (they should be just turning golden and not going brown) and then leave them on the baking tray to cool. They are very soft when they come out of the oven.
Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of gently simmering water and when melted dip or drizzle over the biscuits. You can also sprinkle them with chopped nuts, glacé ginger or whatever you fancy…. or decorate however you like.