Friday, 29 May 2015

Egg free, Vegan meringues

Egg free, vegan meringues - amazing use for leftover chickpea brine

 Have you ever made anything you're so unduly proud of that you feel like telling the world? Stopping random people on the street, and saying - "Quick! Try my..." I did this weekend. A couple of weeks back I was chatting with Helen of Fuss Free Flavours  and she mentioned that you could use the water from a tin of chickpeas as an egg white replacer. I think I spoke recently about the fact that Harry's allergies have extended to eggs so I've cut them out of my diet too. I was making a batch of houmous for the baby - chickpeas, garlic, olive oil, tahini and cumin - and ended up with the jug of mysterious looking liquid below. I was about to pour it down the sink when inspiration struck and I thought I'd have a bash at some meringues. Truth be told, I wasn't expecting much!

Chickpea brine - the mysterious ingredient in vegan meringues

I sort of guesstimated quantities a bit and used the method for meringues that I was taught when much younger.

Vegan meringues - egg free, dairy free

150ml brine from a tin of chickpeas (water from 1 tin)
125g caster sugar
1/2 tsp cream of tartar

Preheat the oven to 90 degrees
Whisk up the brine until you get to soft peaks. I did it in my stand mixer and it took ages - 7-10 minutes I'd say
Add the sugar and cream of tartar and continue to mix until you get to stiff peaks

Chickpea brine whisked to stiff peaks with caster sugar

Amazing vegan, egg free meringue made from chickpea brine
 Line some trays with baking parchment and pipe your meringue nests - I used a big star nozzle and got three trays of nests out of this mix
Egg free, vegan meringues made from chickpea brine

Egg free, vegan meringues made from chickpea brine

Bake these without opening the door for 2 hours, then switch off the oven and leave in there to cool for another hour. 

The finished product is slightly golden and tastes a little like cinder toffee/ honeycomb - they're very light and crisp initially, but today after being stored in an airtight tin overnight are much chewier (which is my preference). My husband and inlaws had them with bowls of raspberries and vanilla ice cream. I had mine plain with heaps of raspberries. They'd be fabulous in a vegan eton mess, or just with lots of summer berries.

Toffee-ish meringues, vegan, egg free, made from chickpea brine


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