It’s been a while since I’ve posted here. I had a long summer at home full-time with both kids, a lot of media promotion for Baconish, and then more recently I’ve been adjusting to a new back-to-school schedule with my older one in kindergarten and my younger one starting her first classes. My daily schedule now is something like drop off, pick up, drop off, pick up, make lunch, pick up, make snacks, drop off, pick up, make dinner, get kids ready for bed, get them to sleep, collapse. And in between all of that dropping off and picking up I also manage to work as the Customer Service Guru for vegan fashion label Vaute Couture. I look back at last year and have no idea how I managed to complete a cookbook! I’m exhausted most of the time and it’s been a while since I’ve found inspiration to try out any new recipes.
Enter Zsu Dever‘s newest book, Aquafaba. Aquafaba, for those unaware, is very simply the liquid from cooking beans. It’s the liquid you normally pour down the drain when you open a can of beans, or the liquid in the pot after you cook them yourself. It is protein-rich, and in 2015 the vegan world was rocked when it was discovered by Goose Wohlt that this liquid mimics egg whites and can be whipped into a perfect vegan meringue. It can be used in its liquid form simply as an egg replacer, or it can be whipped into a meringue for pies or any number of other uses, including vegan macarons, pavlovas, or mousse. It is nothing short of miraculous! For a long time I have been a member of the Facebook Aquafaba group, where I am constantly astonished at the amazing creations that people from all over the world are making with aquafaba. (And they are super helpful at troubleshooting when people post their aquafaba “misses” too!)
My book Baconish uses aquafaba in several recipes, as it really is my egg-replacer of choice, but now we have Zsu’s groundbreaking cookbook, which is meticulously researched and the ultimate handbook on how to successfully use aquafaba in so many different ways. The first section is about how to make aquafaba, how to whip it, how to use it, and how to store it. Then we have chapters for Condiments, Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner, Sweets, and then a bonus section for bean recipes, using all those “leftover” beans you have after obtaining your aquafaba. Some recipes that I have flagged to try out are: Tamagoyaki Rolled Omelet, Latkes, Nougat, Lemon Meringue and Coconut-Key Lime Cream Pies, and her Shiro Wat, which makes use of the “leftover” chickpeas. I did test two recipes so far, one for a Chile Relleno Quiche, and another for Chewy Fudge Brownies.
Both recipes used whipped aquafaba in the meringue form. The brownies were super moist, rich, dark and not too sweet. They were perfect with a scoop of ice cream or a glass of pumpkin almond milk (yay pumpkin season!).
The Chile Relleno Quiche was a slightly more involved recipe, as I had to roast the chile peppers, whip the meringue, and blend up a raw cashew-yogurt mixture before combining it all and baking it in the crust. The recipe calls for poblano chiles, but my store didn’t have any, so I substituted jalapenos instead, which added quite a bit more heat.
I have permission to share the quiche recipe below with you! AND I have one copy to give away! If you would like to win your own copy of this fabulous book, comment on this post below and let me know which dish that traditionally uses eggs you would most like to vegan-ize and aquafaba-fy! (Sorry, the giveaway is restricted to US residents only!)
A winner will be chosen at random on Sunday, October 16th. The winner is Amy, congratulations!
CHILE RELLENO QUICHE
This creamy, delicious quiche offers all the flavors of an excellent chiles relleno. Most poblanos are relatively mild, but if you don’t want any heat, substitute 2 large green bell peppers instead. Or, if you like more heat, add a few roasted jalapeños to the mix. (from Aquafaba, copyright © 2016 by Zsu Dever. Used by permission.)
3/4 cup raw cashew pieces
3/4 cup plain unsweetened nondairy yogurt
4 medium poblano chiles
3/4 cup aquafaba (see Note)
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 tablespoons refined coconut oil, just melted and at room temperature
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon oat flour (45 grams)
5 teaspoons nutritional yeast flakes
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 (9-inch) vegan pie crust, par-baked for 12 minutes
1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Combine the cashews and yogurt in a blender and blend
until smooth, scraping the sides as needed. If using a standard blender, allow the nuts to
hydrate for 10 minutes and blend again until smooth. Set aside.
2. Roast the poblanos directly over the flame of your burner or roast them in a cast iron
pan. Cook until blackened and charred all over. Transfer the poblanos to a bowl, cover
the bowl with a plate, and set aside to steam for 15 minutes. Peel the chiles (do not wash
them) and remove the stems and seeds. Chop them into 1/2-inch cubes and set aside. You
should have about 1 1/2 cups.
3. Add the aquafaba and cream of tartar to the bowl of a stand mixer. Using a whisk,
vigorously whip the aquafaba for 10 seconds. Using the balloon whip attachment, whip
the aquafaba on medium power for 5 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-high and
continue to whip for 11 to 13 minutes, or until it forms stiff peaks. Add the oil to the
meringue in a very slow, steady stream, pouring it down the side of the bowl. This should
take about 1 minute.
4. Combine the oat flour, nutritional yeast, salt, turmeric, garlic powder, and black
pepper. Mix well. Add the nut mixture and mix well with a whisk. Transfer about one-
half of the meringue to the oat mixture and fold with a spatula to incorporate. Transfer
the rest of the meringue to the tempered batter and fold until the batter is well mixed and
the meringue is deflated, adding the chopped poblanos toward the end of the folding
process. Pour the batter into the par-baked pie crust and bake for 40 minutes. Increase
the heat to 425°F and continue to bake until the top is golden, about 5 minutes. Chill the
quiche overnight in the refrigerator to firm up.
Makes 1 (9-inch) quiche
Note: Although aquafaba is best if homemade using the recipe provided in the book, you can use
aquafaba from canned chickpeas. Use the organic, low-sodium, canned chickpeas and strain off
the liquid into a measuring cup using a fine mesh strainer. Note the amount of liquid you
acquired, then add it to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook
until the liquid reduces by 1/3. Cool the aquafaba completely before using.