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Food and Recipe of the Month

March - Aquafaba
(Chick Pea Cooking Liquid)

Have you heard of aquafaba? It is an amazing ingredient that is all the rave in the vegan community. I have started using it this summer and created my amazingly light and delicious vegan ice cream with aquafaba. I am very excited to be able to share this month a new Blueberry Muffin recipe I just created using aquafaba as an egg replacement. These muffins are very light and moist from the addition of the aquafaba.

Aquafaba is the liquid that is left over when you cook beans. The most popular is the liquid from when you cook chick peas. The chick pea liquid seems to work best, and has a neutral flavor.I have tried a few different beans to use their cooking liquid, and I have to agree that the chick pea liquid seems to work the best. Because of the starches, proteins, other plant solids that are left in the water after cooking chick peas, the water whipped up to make firm peaks. It is as if you are using egg whites and creating a meringue. The first time I tried to whip the aquafaba, I was so surprised to see how it expanded and looked like meringue. It is a really cool thing to witness.

You can use the aquafaba to create meringues, mayonnaise, butter spreads, vegan cheeses, macaroons, frozen desserts, and as an egg replacement to create light baked goods. In the following recipe I whip the aquafaba first and then add other ingredients to utilize the chick pea liquid. These muffins are very light and moist, and the addition of apple and blueberries gives them a nice sweetness without being too sweet.

Recipe of the month:

Blueberry Aquafaba Muffins

1/4 cup aquafaba
2 T. flax seed meal
1 small apple (core removed and cut up)
1/2 cup olive oil
3/4 cup brown rice syrup
1 T. fresh grated turmeric (optional)
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. allspice
pinch sea salt
1 tsp. baking powder
3 cups whole grain flour (oat flour for gluten-free)
1 1/2 cup blueberries

Put aquafaba in food processor. Puree for 5 minutes, until the liquid has doubled in size, becomes white, and is firm. Add the apple, flax seed meal, olive oil, and fresh turmeric if using. Puree until apple has become liquid. (The mixture will deflate a little.)

In a mixing bowl, put the whole grain flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and blueberries, mix together. Pour the pureed mixture and brown rice syrup in to the mixing bowl, mix all together. Spoon in to an oiled muffin pan, bake at 350°for 20 minutes. Makes 10 small muffins.

(The muffins work well using spelt flour, a combo of spelt and oat, or all oat flour for a gluten-free recipe.)

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