3.18.2016

aquafaba!



It has been a few weeks since my last post (check my last post for the winner of Vegan Under Pressure (Amazon)) and I’m excited to share what I’ve been working feverishly on.

Yes, it’s a new cookbook. But, it is more than just a cookbook. It is a cookbook about Aquafaba! While many people have already heard about it, still many more haven’t. If you know what Aquafaba is, skip the next paragraph, but if you are new to the Aquafaba world, the next paragraph is a bit of a recap.

Aquafaba is bean water. It is literally the bean water that chickpeas and other legumes are cooked in. A French opera singer, Joël Roessel, and an American software engineer, Goose Wohlt, each (independently) discovered the unique property of bean cooking water, and it is amazing! The water that the beans cook in have the unique property to be able to be whipped into foam that resembles in texture (and some other properties) of whipped egg whites. In other words, they discovered that Aquafaba, bean water, can act as a meringue! That’s what started something that is sure to become the phenomena of the century.

As soon as Aquafaba was discovered, a Facebook group was organized and now is the hub of all kinds of discoveries into all manners of different applications of Aquafaba. I encourage you to check out the group Vegan Meringue: Hits and Misses (but the group is way more than just meringue these days!)

Last March, when the news hit the webosphere, I had a first row seat and watched in wonder as meringue, fluff, cookies, and my contributions, Seitan Schnitzel and Chile Relleno, were shared for all to enjoy. Aquafaba has become a community effort and I am hoping my book will be a contribution to the wonder that is becoming a global phenomenon.

Late last year (after my book, Vegan Bowls, was published) I knew I had to think about what to work on next. I was continually amazed at the wonders that the members of Vegan Meringue Hits and Misses kept posting. I saw the hits and the misses and sometimes frustrations of members who just wanted tried and true recipes for Aquafaba… and that’s when a light bulb went off. I knew I had my next project.

When I set my mind to a project, I dig deep and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing with Aquafaba over the past half year. I swim in Aquafaba these days – actually, that’s not true – it’s chickpeas I’m swimming in; the Aquafaba gets used up as fast as I can make it in experiment after experiment.

I am very excited to be part of the Aquafaba movement and am completely honored that Goose Wohlt has agreed to write the foreword to my book!

I know that my cookbook will be just the tip of the iceberg that Aquafaba is, so my hope is that this book will be a wonderful beacon that will bring many more creative individuals to this ever evolving arena.

11 comments:

  1. Very exciting! This sounds like a very unique book and I wish you success with it =D

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  2. A friend of mine is doing some recipe testing for you on this book, and I cannot explain my enthusiasm and excitement! This is BIG! I can't wait!!!!

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    1. I'm very happy you are excited! I am, too! It's hard work, but I think it will give many folks a completely different direction to go in for egg replacement - and that is great all around! Thank you so very much for your support!!

      Zsu

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    2. Amazing news Zsu! I cannot wait for this!!!

      I've gotten aquafaba to whip to stiff peaks, unfortunately, it always collapses when baked, so looking forward to your book!

      Please make it come out sooner!

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  3. Hi,

    I just received my copy of Aquafaba and wish that the coconut oils, shortening, butters and other saturated fat heavy ingredients had been substituted. Most of my reason for ordering the book, after all, was to avoid using coconut milk and nuts for so many of the whipped creams etc. that have become so popular in vegan cooking. Can you list some saturated fat free (and, ideally, healthful) ingredients to substitute? Thanks.

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    1. Hello Compassionist,

      First, thank you for having the book, but I do feel you should return it and get a full refund.

      Aquafaba is not a replacement for fat and I never claimed that it was. This is not a healthful cookbook in the least bit and, again, I've never claimed it to be so, after all, it is full of sugars, white flour and fat.

      Unfortunately, there is no replacement or substitution for the saturated fats because it is only saturated fats that are solid at room temperature, and in the recipes that call for them, they are needed. The good news, is that it is plant-based saturated fat.

      I truly am sorry this is disappointing, as I am sure it must be. Aquafaba is simply not as powerful without other helpful ingredients, except for making meringue, and even then, sugar is needed to help hold the structure.

      While I would be happy to help troubleshoot certain recipes (someone has told me that tahini works in certain cases), I fear that what you are asking is a complete overhaul, one that means I should have written a completely different cookbook. It just does not sound feasible or practical.

      I hope you will be able to return the book as I would not wish for you to have a book that does not please you.

      Kind regards,
      Zsu

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  4. Hi Zsu,

    I bought your book Aquafaba and it looks very exciting and promising. I read how to make it and I have a question. Normally, I soak my beans before cooking them. I tries once not to soak them before cooking and OMG, I tough that I would go straight to the moon (you know what I mean)! Is the cooking water, after soaking, would be fine for Aquafaba? If not, is the kombu play a role in limiting sides effects if cooking without soaking? Maybe someone already ask that question but I haven’t seen the answer.

    Linda Jalbert

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    1. Hi Linda,

      Thank you for having the book! I hope you have many successful adventures with it.

      Yes, the kombu is to help with the digestion issues, but it sounds like you might be particularly susceptible to the legume-effect. My suggestion is that you soak the beans as you normally would but note how much water you use and how much you pour off after soaking. Subtract the two amounts and then subtract that amount from the amount of water you are supposed to cook the beans to get aquafaba. In other words, you are cooking the beans in the recommended amount of water minus the water that they have already absorbed when you soaked them. This will put you on par with the recipe. Of course, watch how long you need to cook it for - probably the same as you would normally, so that shouldn't be an issue.

      The other way to get around the soaking issue is to soak and cook the beans like you normally do and then pour off the aquafaba. Cook the aquafaba until reduced to the amount that is in the yield section of the book. Note how much beans you have and reduce the aquafaba to the suggested amount.

      It is important that your aquafaba gel somewhat when completely cold. This is a good indication of its strength.

      Also, check the errata page for more discussion and notes on the Aquafaba TOC and Errata section on this blog: http://www.zsusveganpantry.com/p/aquafaba-table-of-contents.html

      AND you are always welcome to email me directly. zsudever at yahoo dot com.

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    2. Thanks for your answer. You took my question very seriously. I will follow your advice and I will freeze all Aquafaba I can get (after reducing it) and then I will be ready to use it any time. Thanks again.
      Linda

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    3. My pleasure, Linda! I want you to have the best experience with aquafaba as is possible and that means feeling well after eating recipies cooked with it.

      Again, lmk if you ever have any questions or concerns.

      Zsu

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