Some desserts just can’t be made gluten free, or so they say. When we end up going gluten free we miss out on so many things. So many delicious desserts that people are convinced simply can’t be done. Well I’m here to prove you wrong, (you know just like I did with my GF Tim Tams). Gluten free does not have to be boring or hard! So much so that you can make the classic Aussie dessert, the infamous Chocolate Ripple Cake. All with easy and divine homemade gluten free chocolate ripple biscuits.
Now before you freak out that this will be super hard, trust me, it’s not! These biscuits are insanely easy to whip up and are delicious all on their own. A mixture of a brownie and a classic biscuit, they’re chewy and fudgey all at once. They keep well for a few days so all you need to do next is slather them in gorgeous thickened sweet cream and pop it in the fridge! Voile! Instant dessert.
But what exactly is a Chocolate Ripple Cake?
An iconic Australian dessert that’s been around since the 30’s! An icebox (or fridge) dessert that was very simply constructed from just a few ingredients. Arnott’s Chocolate Ripple biscuits were sandwiched with thick cream, sweetened just a touch of icing sugar and vanilla bean, then stacked into a log. Then it was popped into the fridge, it really was that simple!
What it resulted in was a gorgeously soft almost cake like texture when sliced. (Thanks to the cream soaking into the biscuits). It was never polarising either with classic notes of chocolate and vanilla…. I mean can you even go wrong?
Now in theory this recipe should be super easy to convert to gluten free right?
Well except the tiny detail that there aren’t many decent gluten free chocolate biscuits available on the shelves of the supermarket! Small detail. Tiny!
But I’ve seen so many of you, my fabulous gluten free bakers, asking for this one dessert. So I knew I had to take the challenge to not only whip up a soft chewy chocolate biscuit that closely resembles the Chocolate Ripple but one that could be slabbed and slathered into perfect creamy cake goodness!
A Challenge Was Born
I won’t lie, getting the texture right for these biscuits was a bit of a challenge at first! But I was determined to get a beautiful gluten free biscuit that was not only nice to eat on its own but held its place in a chocolate ripple cake.
The key was in the way we started the recipe, or rather what I call the Technique we used. In baking we have many types of techniques (creaming, melting, reverse creaming, muffin method). If you’re a member of my Gluten Free Baking Membership The Sweet Course Academy, then you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about here.
To get that perfect chewiness I opted to use the Melting Method. A method where we melt the sugar and butter together first to create a gorgeously gooey caramel type consistency. From there it’s pretty simple and much like every other biscuit recipe you’ve seen, with eggs, vanilla, cocoa powder and flour added to form a dough.
Gluten Free Chocolate Ripple Cake = Easy As Pie!
Honestly, it’s a super simple recipe. Whip up a batch of cookies, the day before, the day of, even freeze them, whatever time you have. Then whip together thickened cream with a little icing sugar (gluten free of course) and a touch of vanilla extract. Slather it all together in a slab, no need for it to be perfect here and done!
Your chocolate ripple cake will need a minimum of 6 hours in the fridge to not only set up, but to allow the cream to soak into the cookies. (Otherwise they’re too hard and it will be hard to cut). So you can certainly make this wonderful dessert well ahead of time, store in the fridge covered in cling wrap and pull it out when you’re ready! Serve with a dusting of extra cocoa powder and some fresh berries and you will WOW even the toughest of guests!
Now go head, give my Gluten Free Chocolate Ripple Cake a go today!
Gluten Free Chocolate Ripple Cake
- 170 grams Salted Butter
- 205 grams Brown Sugar
- 1 Xlrg Egg room temperature, whisked
- 1 Xlrg Egg Yolk room temperature, whisked
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 75 grams Cocoa Powder
- 230 grams Self Raising Gluten Free flour any supermarket brand
- 500 ml Thickened Cream cold
- 3 Tbsp Icing Sugar (GF) sieved
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
- Preheat your oven to 180° Celsius or 160° Fan Forced and line two trays with baking paper or reusable baking mats. Set aside.
- In a medium size saucepan place the butter and brown sugar. Place over a medium heat and slowly whisk together. This will take a couple of minutes but will become a thick caramel consistency. Keep whisking until all the butter is absorbed and the sugar dissolved.
- Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes. (It should be cool enough to touch).
- Once it has cooled some, whisk the egg, extra egg yolk and vanilla into the caramel mixture.
- Add the cocoa powder and flour and using a metal spoon bring together until a thick, dark dough is formed. It will be soft at this point still, like a brownie mixture almost. Set aside and allow it to cool and thicken further for 5 minutes.
- Once the dough has cooled enough we can touch it, we can start scooping. Take your prepared cookie trays and using either a very small ice cream scoop or a dessert spoon scoop balls of dough, (remember its very soft still and slightly warm). Form into a rough ball and place onto your tray, pat down slightly until it's flat on top.
- Continue with the remainder of the dough, leaving a good 3-4cm space between each cookie. Place prepared trays into your oven and bake for 10 minutes. There's no major visual way to tell when these guys are done, simply bake for 8-10 minutes and the cookies will puff up and be very slightly darker just around the edges.
- Allow cookies to cool for 5 minutes on the tray before transferring them to a wire rack to cool fully. You want your cookies to have been cooling for several hours before you try to make them into the Ripple Cake, otherwise their internal temperature can melt the cream.
- Once the cookies are completely cool you can start to assemble your Chocolate Ripple Cake. You can easily make the cookies a day before you plan on assembling. Simply store in an air tight container overnight.
- In a large bowl place the thick cream, icing sugar and vanilla. Beat with hand held beaters until thick peaks form.
- Take a long tray or serving platter on which you want your ripple cake to sit. You can't move it once it's frosted so choose wisely to start with.
- Place several tablespoons of thickened cream onto the tray and smooth out to 20-25cm long. You want to create a cream trough for the cookies to sit in that will help hold them up. I recommend 8cm wide x 20-25cm long x 2cm deep.
- Take your cool cookies and bundle them into piles of roughly the same size. Each pile will consist of 4 cookies.
- Using a butter knife or small offset spatula take one cookie and spread a thick layer of cream onto one side. Place it standing on its side with its lip/edge facing towards you. (refer to the image above).
- Now take a second cookie and do the same. Place this one up against the first cookie, squishing the cream between the two. Continue until you have 4 cookies standing side by side in the cream trough with cream sandwiched between each. (yeah your fingers will get a little messy here, but at least it's the tasty kind!).
- Continue the same process with each bundle of 4 cookies, working backwards along your trough of cream. Be sure to place each new bundle of cookies up against each other and fill any gaps with thick cream, you can be quite liberal here.
- Once all of your cookies are stacked to make a log you can take the remaining cream and place it along the tops of the cookies, fill in the dips between each bundle of cookies to create a roughly level log.
- Continue with the excess cream running it down the sides of your log and anywhere there might be gaps. Slap it on thickly and smooth out roughly to create a square-ish log. You can add a little textured lines to the cream (to cover any imperfections 😉) with your knife.
- To finish, the cream cake must chill for 6 hours so that the cream can soak into the cookies and become a cake like texture! I recommend covering it with a cloche to stop the cream from discolouring in the fridge. If you don't have a tupperware container that fits over top or a cloche you can easily use cling wrap, however you might like to stick a couple of skewers into the top of the log first to ensure the cling wrap doesn't stick to your cream and peel it off later.
- Refrigerate for 6 hours or over night.
- Remove from the fridge when you plan on serving it. Finish with a liberal dusting of cocoa powder and any fresh berries you might like for a wow factor.
- To serve, simply take a sharp knife and cut thick slices on a 45 degree angle. Check out the pictures at the top of the page to give you an idea. Enjoy!
- Why not decorate with fresh cherries for a fabulous Christmas dessert!
- I’ve used Well and Good Gluten Free flour here, as I do in almost all of my recipes. However these biscuits will work with any good supermarket flour blend.