Use aquafaba in recipes for french toast, waffles and pulled jackfruit, pavlova

By on May 5, 2017


Rebecca Coleman, author of the new cookbook ``Aquafabulous! 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba'' (Robert Rose Inc., www.robertrose.ca, 2017), says the liquid opens up a lot of other avenues, too, such as in vegan mayonnaise and nut-free cheese. (ShutterStock)
Rebecca Coleman, author of the new cookbook “Aquafabulous! 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba” (Robert Rose Inc., www.robertrose.ca, 2017), says the liquid opens up a lot of other avenues, too, such as in vegan mayonnaise and nut-free cheese. (ShutterStock)

Finding a replacement for eggs can be one of the biggest challenges for vegan bakers or people with sensitivities or allergies. Aquafaba, or the brine from legumes like chickpeas, is a dream come true because it can be used as a substitute for eggs in sweet and savoury applications.

Rebecca Coleman, author of the new cookbook “Aquafabulous! 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba” (Robert Rose Inc., www.robertrose.ca, 2017), says the liquid opens up a lot of other avenues, too, such as in vegan mayonnaise and nut-free cheese.

Because it can take up to 10 minutes to whip aquafaba like egg whites, she suggests using a stand mixer. You won’t get the correct result with a blender, though an immersion blender can be used for mayonnaise.

A rule of thumb is that 45 millilitres (three tablespoons) of aquafaba is equivalent to one egg and 30 ml (2 tbsp) of aquafaba equals one large egg white. When beaten, 45 ml (3 tbsp) of aquafaba will make 250 to 500 ml (1 to 2 cups) of meringue (whipped aquafaba).

Coleman keeps aquafaba in a mason jar in the fridge for seven days once she opens a can of chickpeas. It can also be poured into ice-cube trays and frozen for up to six months. Pop frozen aquafaba cubes into a self-sealing plastic bag. They can be thawed overnight in the fridge or in a bowl in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Each cube is about 30 to 45 millilitres (two to three tablespoons), just the amount called for in many recipes.

Here are three vegan recipes developed by Coleman using aquafaba.

COCONUT FRENCH TOAST

Coconut is integrated into every layer of this decadent french toast.

It’s important to use canned coconut milk rather than coconut beverage because this recipe requires its thickness and viscosity.

French bread, which is a larger artisan loaf with a crispy crust, is often vegan. Check the ingredients list or ask your baker to ensure it contains no eggs, dairy, butter or honey.

To toast coconut flakes, place them in a dry skillet over low heat, stirring constantly, until they are slightly golden on the edges, 5 to 7 minutes.

This recipe is nut-free and soy-free.

125 ml (1/2 cup) unsweetened coconut milk

60 ml (1/4 cup) aquafaba

30 ml (2 tbsp) pure maple syrup (plus more for serving)

5 ml (1 tsp) ground cinnamon

30 ml (2 tbsp) coconut flour

4 slices white french bread

30 ml (2 tbsp) coconut oil, divided

Coconut Whip (recipe follows)

Toasted unsweetened coconut flakes

In a small bowl, combine coconut milk, aquafaba, maple syrup, cinnamon and coconut flour. Whisk until well blended.

Pour coconut mixture into a large shallow dish (a baking dish works well). Place bread in coconut mixture and let it sit for a couple of minutes to absorb liquid. Flip and let sit for a couple more minutes.

Meanwhile, in a non-stick skillet over medium heat, heat 15 ml (1 tbsp) of the coconut oil. Fry 2 slices of bread on one side until crispy and brown around edges, about 3 minutes, then flip and cook on other side for about 3 minutes. Repeat with remaining bread.

Place 2 slices of french toast on each plate. Top with a dollop of coconut whip and sprinkle with toasted coconut. Serve with additional maple syrup, if desired.

Makes 2 servings.

COCONUT WHIP

Coconut whip is a whipped cream substitute that is a little richer and thicker than basic meringue.

1 can (400 ml/14 oz) coconut milk

Place can of coconut milk in refrigerator overnight. (This allows the solids and liquids to separate.)

Chill mixer bowl and wire whisk attachment in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes.

Attach wire whisk and mixer bowl to stand mixer. Carefully open can of coconut milk, making sure not to turn it over. Scoop out solids that have risen to top and place in bowl (set aside thin liquid for another use).

Set speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. Increase speed as high as it will go; beat until fluffy and peaks form, 4 to 5 minutes. Use immediately.

Makes 250 ml (1 cup).

CORNBREAD WAFFLES AND PULLED JACKFRUIT

This is Coleman’s vegan version of the popular brunch dish of chicken or pulled pork and waffles. She uses jackfruit, which has a texture that mimics meat.

“It’s pretty amazing and it’s the kind of dish that you can feed to carnivores and they’ll be like, ‘What is this?’ because it’s very convincing looking,” she says.

Because the cornbread waffle recipe is low in fat, she advises greasing the waffle maker well, even if it has non-stick plates, to ensure they don’t stick. If you are having a tough time getting the waffles off, try cooking them for an additional minute or two.

If needed, keep waffles warm in a 100 C (200 F) oven. Place on a baking sheet in a single layer until ready to use.

Make sure to use sugar that has not been filtered through bone char because it’s not vegan.

Do not use a nut milk if you want to keep this recipe nut-free.

125 ml (1/2 cup) unsweetened non-dairy milk

15 ml (1 tbsp) apple cider vinegar

125 ml (1/2 cup) all-purpose flour

30 ml (2 tbsp) granulated sugar

125 ml (1/2 cup) cornmeal

10 ml (2 tsp) baking powder

5 ml (1 tsp) salt

30 ml (2 tbsp) aquafaba

0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) xanthan gum

60 ml (1/4 cup) vegetable oil

Pulled Jackfruit (recipe follows), warm

Bourbon Maple Syrup

375 ml (1 1/2 cups) maple syrup

30 ml (2 tbsp) bourbon

In a small bowl, combine non-dairy milk and apple cider vinegar. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cornmeal, baking powder and salt. (Use an immersion blender, if desired.)

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine aquafaba and xanthan gum. Set mixer speed to low and beat for 2 minutes. Increase speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. Increase speed as high as it will go and beat mixture until stiff peaks form, 4 to 6 minutes.

Preheat waffle maker to medium, then oil or spray lightly.

Add oil to milk mixture and mix well. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, dig out a well in centre of flour mixture. Pour milk mixture into well. Stir until combined. Carefully fold in whipped aquafaba.

Pour 60 ml (1/4 cup) of the batter per waffle square and cook for 7 minutes or according to manufacturer’s directions. Transfer to a plate.

Bourbon Maple Syrup: Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, warm syrup and bourbon, just to the boiling point, whisking well.

Top each waffle with a scoop of warmed pulled jackfruit. Serve with bourbon maple syrup to pour over top and extra barbecue sauce on the side.

Makes 4 servings.

PULLED JACKFRUIT

Pulled jackfruit can be made up to three days in advance, stored in an airtight container in the fridge and rewarmed before serving.

Buy canned jackfruit packed in brine (not syrup) from Asian grocery stores and well-stocked supermarkets or online.

60 ml (1/4 cup) vegetable oil, divided (approx)

1 medium onion, finely chopped, divided

6 cloves garlic, minced, divided

125 ml (1/2 cup) ketchup

75 ml (1/3 cup) seasoned rice vinegar

60 ml (1/4 cup) packed brown sugar

15 ml (1 tbsp) Dijon mustard

15 ml (1 tbsp) tamari

30 ml (2 tbsp) pure maple syrup

2 ml (1/2 tsp) liquid smoke

2 cans (each 565 ml/20 oz) young green jackfruit in brine

10 ml (2 tsp) chili powder

5 ml (1 tsp) ground cumin

5 ml (1 tsp) smoked paprika

Barbecue sauce: In a small saucepan, heat 15 ml (1 tbsp) of the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add 75 ml (1/3 cup) of the onion and 15 ml (1 tbsp) of the garlic. Cook, stirring, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard, tamari, maple syrup and liquid smoke. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened. Remove from heat and let sauce cool slightly.

Transfer sauce to a blender and blend on high until smooth (or use an immersion blender).

Drain jackfruit through a colander, discarding brine. Remove tough centre core of each piece (the tops of the triangles). Discard any seed pods (these are all edible; they’re just not esthetically pleasing). You’ll be left with shreds of jackfruit. Pull them apart with your fingers.

In a large skillet, heat remaining oil over medium-high heat. Add remaining onion and minced garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add chili powder, cumin and paprika. Add jackfruit and stir to coat. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and adding more oil if needed, until edges of jackfruit start to get a bit crispy and brown.

Gradually add barbecue sauce 30 to 45 ml (a few tablespoons) at a time, mixing well. Add just enough to make mixture juicy and cohesive but not too runny. Serve remaining sauce with waffles.

FRUIT PAVLOVA

Simple but elegant, pavlova looks like fluffy clouds topped with macerated fruit. In the summer, top the meringue with seasonal berries and in the winter use figs and pomegranates.

Make sure to use sugar that has not been filtered through bone char because it’s not vegan.

This recipe is gluten-free, nut-free and soy-free.

Pavlovas

150 ml (2/3 cup) aquafaba

60 ml (1/4 cup) granulated sugar

1 ml (1/4 tsp) cream of tartar

10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla extract

Assembly

750 ml (3 cups) mixed berries, such as hulled strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries

30 ml (2 tbsp) granulated sugar

1 recipe Coconut Whip (see recipe above)

Pavlovas: Preheat oven to 100 C (200 F). Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with wire whisk attachment, place aquafaba, sugar and cream of tartar. Set mixer speed to low and beat for 2 minutes. Increase speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. Increase to highest speed and beat mixture until fluffy and peaks form, 4 to 6 minutes. You should be able to turn the bowl upside down without the meringue budging.

Drop about 125 ml (1/2 cup) meringue onto prepared baking sheet. Swirl it around with the back of a spoon so it forms a nest. (You can also do this with a piping bag if you want your pavlovas to be less rustic looking.) Repeat to make 6 nests, spacing at least 5 to 7.5 cm (2 to 3 inches) apart.

Bake in preheated oven with one pan on right side of upper shelf, the other on left side of lower shelf, for 45 minutes. Switch pans, then bake for another 45 minutes, until pavlovas are dull and have a solid crust on top. Turn off heat and leave in the oven overnight to set.

Meanwhile, place fruit in a large bowl and sprinkle sugar over top. Stir well, cover and transfer to fridge overnight.

Remove pavlovas from oven. Place in serving bowls or on plates and top with fresh fruit and a dollop of coconut whip.

Makes 6 servings.