I’m loving vegan meringues, light, crisp and sweet – with the melt in your mouth sensation, they are just heaven. When I can make things like this I never feel like I’m missing out with following my vegan lifestyle. Aquafaba is like a magic liquid you never thought you’d ever use.
Well guessing your now wondering what aquafaba is, well basically it is the water from a tin of chickpeas or beans. The technical term is the viscous water in which legume seeds/ beans have been cooked in. Now aquafaba has this amazing ability to mimic functional properties of egg whites, so you can use it as an egg white replacement in certain recipes.
Aquafaba is a combination of carbohydrates, proteins and soluble plant solids which then gives you the ability to emulsify, foam, bind, gelatinise and thicken foods. Which makes it ideal for making meringues, as once in the mixer you wouldn’t even know it’s not egg whites as it quickly aerates and becomes stiff like egg whites do.
Usually it’s recommended to use 2 tablespoons of aquafaba per one egg white or you can even use 3 tbsp for one whole egg. Now I’ve not used it cakes as of yet, maybe one to try, however I have used in icing which works beautifully on my Vegan gingerbread men recipe last year, even held the gingerbread house better than normal royal icing.
There are 2 ways to get aquafaba, option 1 which is what I use is by decanting the liquid from canned or boxed pack beans or chickpeas ( I don’t tent to use the water from kidney beans or black beans as this discolour and gives you food a very grey/dark colour). Other option is to soak and boil/stream/pressure cook beans or legumes and then using the water they were cooked in.
The one thing I will say is aquafaba can be a little temperamental as I tried making the exact same recipe a few weeks ago but added stevia based sweetener and my attempt was an epic fail, as although I got the stiff peaks, in the oven is where it went all down hill, they just didn’t seem to cook the inside and the outside was not baking, when it finally baked they looked and tasted burnt.
I know they recipe seems unbelievably basic but the results are brilliant. Make sure you don’t have any traces of oil,grease or water or the mixture may deflate and those hard-worked bubbles just collapse. Now before you ask, No you can not taste chickpeas or beans in the meringue!
1 Tins of Chickpeas/Beans Water
200g Caster Sugar
1/2 Tsp Cream of Tartar
1 Tsp Corn Flour
Open 2 tins of chickpeas/butter beans drain out the beans keep the water aside. Place the bean water in the fridge over night, then pour into a mixer with a whisk attachment.
Slowly begin to whip on medium to high-speed until is starts to form and doubles in size, then spoon as a time add the caster sugar, cream of tartar and corn flour, now speed up the mixer to high and allow to whip.
Whip until stiff peaks form, you can flavour with vanilla or any flavour of choice.
fill a piping bag with meringue mixture and pipe on to a baking paper on a baking tray, either pipe smaller meringues like I did or you could make a big for a Pavlova.
Bake in the oven at 140c for at least an hour, then reduce temperature to 120c for further 30 minutes. Then turn off the oven and allow the meringues to cool in the oven ( this process can take 2 hours).
The Meringues are ready to use in what every form you like, eton mess or mini Pavlova, even crushed over an ice cream sundae. Store in an airtight container.[yumprint-recipe id=’102′]