The ‘Monte Carlo’ was an old family favourite before we had to become gluten and dairy free. For those of you who do not know what a ‘Monte Carlo’ is, it’s a coconut sandwich biscuit with a delicious raspberry and cream filling. I had a few issues getting the cream right in the beginning, as it was making the biscuit quite soft just a day after baking them.
After 3 batches of having the same problem, I asked if anyone was able to help me or offer any suggestions to my dilemma on my Facebook page. One lovely person told me about a Facebook page for Miss Lulu’s Dessert Parlour in Sydney, Australia, so I sent her an inbox message and she was kind enough to offer me some advice.
I was very happy with the next batch, as the biscuit stayed relatively crisp for a few days. The key is not to make them in a large batch, so they don’t get the chance to go soft. Either that or eat them up quicker, which isn’t too difficult once you’ve had one!
So now that it has been tweaked, I hope you enjoy these biscuits as much as my family and friends do.
Recipe Update: This recipe now includes ounce and cup measurements. To make the conversions easier I have increased the butter in the biscuit and icing sugar by 1 gram, the sorghum, white rice flour and the butter in the icing by 2 grams, the potato starch by 3 grams and I have decreased the muscovado sugar by 1 gram and the brown rice flour by 2 grams.
I also found that by bringing the jam to the boil, this helped it to set thicker once cooled, which meant the biscuit base didn’t soften as quickly. I needed to increase the raspberry jam from 60g to 100g using this new method.
For accurate cup measurements, I sift the potato starch and icing sugar before measuring, so that there are no lumps/clumps. All cup measurements are firmly packed.
61g (2.2 ounces or ¼ cup plus 1 teaspoon) gluten & dairy free butter
99g (3.5 ounces or ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon) light muscovado sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature and lightly beaten
½ teaspoon (2.5ml) pure vanilla extract
72g (2.6 ounces or ½ cup) sorghum flour
33g (1.2 ounces or 3 tablespoons) potato starch
32g (1.1 ounces or ¼ cup) white rice flour
18g (0.6 ounces or 2 tablespoons) brown rice flour
16g (0.6 ounces or 2 tablespoons) coconut flour
¾ teaspoon (3.75ml) baking powder
¼ teaspoon xanthan gum
¼ teaspoon salt
48g (1.7 ounces or ½ cup) desiccated coconut
42g (1.5 ounces or 3 tablespoons) gluten & dairy free butter
81g (1.9 ounces or ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon) pure icing sugar, sifted
1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
100g (3.5 ounces or ⅓ cup)) raspberry jam
Cream the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer, this takes a couple of minutes. Next, add the vanilla and lightly beaten egg, then mix until well combined.
Sift together all the dry ingredients and then stir through the desiccated coconut. Mix the dry ingredients with the wet until well combined, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 160C and line two trays with baking paper or parchment. Make each round of biscuit dough 15g (0.5 ounces or 1 tablespoon) and then gently roll out to an oblong shape and place on prepared trays a few centimetres apart.
I lightly dip a fork in rice flour and then tap on the side of the container to shake off any excess. Doing this prevents the fork from sticking to the soft biscuit dough. Gently and evenly press down on each oblong shape.
Then press the fork across the biscuit, turn the tray around and press again in the opposite direction to create a criss-cross pattern on the top of each biscuit. This helps to keep a more traditional shape.
Here’s a close up of the criss-cross pattern.
Bake the biscuits for approximately 15-18 minutes or until they are light gold in colour. Depending on your oven, you may need to move trays around half way through the baking process to ensure the biscuits bake evenly.
While the biscuits are baking, add the raspberry jam to a small saucepan and bring to the boil, before taking it off the heat. Then strain the jam through a sieve, to remove the seeds, and allow it to cool completely.
Allow the biscuits to cool for a 3 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the vanilla butter cream filling, use an electric beater to beat the butter and vanilla seeds until pale. Then gradually add the sifted icing sugar, so that the mixture is thick and creamy.
To assemble, spread 1 teaspoon of butter cream over one biscuit and ½ a teaspoon of jam on the other, before you gently sandwich the two together. Allow the biscuits to stand for approximately 1 hour to allow the cream to firm up.
Store these biscuits in an airtight container.
Recipe by: The Gluten & Dairy Free Bakehouse
Note: all recipe oven temperatures shown are for a fan forced electric oven. Please refer to the below guide to help you adjust your oven accordingly. This recipe is shown in bold.
Oven Temperatures Chart
130C = 110C fan = 250F = Gas mark 1
150C = 130C fan = 300F = Gas mark 2
160C = 140C fan = 325F = Gas mark 3
180C = 160C fan = 350F = Gas mark 4
190C = 170C fan = 375F = Gas mark 5
200C = 180C fan = 400F = Gas mark 6
220C = 200C fan = 425F = Gas mark 7
230C = 210C fan = 450F = Gas mark 8