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Big Mac Pizza

21 Feb

Well hello again. Have you missed me?

This has been quite the hiatus. I bet you’re wondering where I was. Well, I was here; still in the Midwest. In case you missed it on my Instagram, last year in October I had a second baby and since that time I’ve been pretty busy.

But I still think about little old Avocados and Ales all the time. Especially when Buzzfeed links to my page. Or Mary’s Test Kitchen makes an amazing video featuring my aquafaba cheese. Seriously, go check the video out, Mary has a way of making everything look easy.

I bet you’re wondering if I would come back with a recipe. It was hard to choose; I’ve been cooking throughout my hiatus but a lot of it is the same old standards. However, I’m constantly looking for something fun to veganize. My friend  MeShell inspired this Big Mac pizza and I’ve made it multiple times since.

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Vegan Pizza Rolls

4 Mar Vegan Pizza Rolls

I am a 90’s kid and there’s no reason for me to deny it. I spent many an afternoon in front of a TV watching cartoons with a box of Totino’s pizza rolls. I’m sure most other 90’s kids remember watching shows like Hey Arnold and Rugrats after school, although maybe the pizza rolls were a particular remnant of my own childhood.

Vegan Pizza Rolls

I always have fun recreating foods like this and pizza rolls have been on my to-do list for years. I very specifically remember the thin and crispy, oily crust, so I knew a pizza crust wasn’t going to work here. I made a basic pasta dough, but used a bit of vital wheat gluten to firm it up. Alternatively, you could just use bread flour, but it’s not something I usually have on hand.

I didn’t get any pictures of the rolling and filling process, but it’s the same as making ravioli. YouTube is a great help for beginners if you’ve never made ravioli before, but it’s pretty simple. Dough, filling, and dough, and just seal around the edges.

I fried these, but they could possibly be baked on a parchment lined pan. The crispy crust effect won’t be the same so as long as you’re not eating them daily, I recommend a shallow fry. This recipe makes about 12, but you can easily double it and keep the rest refrigerated after cooking until you’re ready to eat them.

 

Be sure to check out the Vegan Meringue Group on Facebook for more aquafaba recipes and a thorough FAQ.

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Perfect, Fudgey, Crispy Vegan Brownies

8 Dec Perfect, Fudgey, Crispy Vegan Brownies

When I first discovered aquafaba, I made several attempts at creating a perfect brownie. 5 to be exact, within the span of a week.  Unfortunately, aquafaba doesn’t set like eggs do in baking, so it wasn’t a perfect replacer.  I did find adding a little tofu to set worked pretty well and ended up with dense gooey brownies, but I knew I could improve.

Perfect, Fudgey, Crispy Vegan Brownies

And then came the VeganEgg. That’s right, this recipe is going to require a hard to find ingredient. In fact, you may have to order it online (Amazon and Vegan Essentials carry it.) Sorry about that, but I promise you it’s worth finding! The VeganEgg will perform that crucial task of ‘setting’ during baking, while aquafaba helps create that desirable shiny, crispy crust. You can read my review of VeganEgg here.

One of the keys to brownie perfection is cooling time before cutting. You can even speed this up by tossing them in the freezer. If you cut them too early, that nice crackly crust will tear, leaving you with jagged edges and crumbles. If that doesn’t matter to you, feel free to eat them up while they’re still hot.

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Aquafaba Ranch and Tartar Sauce

2 Dec

So apparently I’m a little late to this party, because people have been making mayo with aquafaba since April. Can you believe it’s only been in the past year that aquafaba has been discovered? It seems like I read about it everywhere now!

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While I’m a big fan of Just Mayo by Hampton Creek, I also love to be able to make things from scratch. Tonight we’re having a fish fry with Sophie’s Kitchen Vegan Shrimp and Gardein Fishless Filets, so tartar sauce was a must. The ranch? Well, I’m saving it for pizza Friday. I know I’m not the only person who dips pizza in ranch, so stop giving me that weird look. Continue reading

Aquafaba Cheddar

3 Nov Aquafaba Cheddar

“But how do you live without cheese!”

If you’re vegan (or lactose intolerant) you’ve probably heard that at least once, or a thousand times. Thankfully, there’s been some really amazing vegan chefs who have made our cheeseless existence quite tolerable. Miyoko Schinner, Jay Astafa, Somer McGowan, and Skye Michael Conroy, have all taught me some valuable tips on vegan-cheese making. I actually took the inspiration from this from Richa Hingle at Vegan Richa.  Her vegan cheddar cheese ball came across my feed around Halloween and I knew the flavors would be perfect for an adaptation of my mozzerella aquafaba cheese. The original recipe that I drew inspiration from for the cashew mozzarella was developed by Jay Astafa. You can watch the YouTube video here. I noticed he uses soy lecithin as an emulsifier, which aquafaba has been shown to do in recipes like Nina’s butter and Peanut Butter and Vegan’s mayo. This inspired me to make the cashew mozzarella using aquafaba as the emulsifier.
Aquafaba Cheddar

Vegan cheese doesn’t create casein protein strands like dairy cheeses do, which is why we use tapioca starch to create that stretchy texture. Some places may have it labeled at tapioca flour, but they should be interchangeable. I find mine at an international market for a cheaper price. I use vegan lactic acid powder to create that dairy-like tang in this recipe. It’s definitely worth the purchase, but if you cannot buy it, substitute a tablespoon of lemon juice instead. Since cheddar has a significant tang to it, I include apple cider vinegar as well as miso paste. Nutritional yeast also adds to the cheesy flavor. Refined coconut oil helps with firmness upon refrigeration and improves the mouthfeel and melt.

Most vegan cheeses use either agar or kappa carrageenan as a binder to be sliceable and shreddable. I choose to use kappa carrageenan, as I prefer the melt and mouthfeel it imparts. I am well aware that many people choose not to consume it and I completely respect that; this recipe may be possible with agar powder, but I have not tested it. If you do test it, please contact me with your results!

Aquafaba Cheddar

If you like this recipe, be sure to check out these other vegan cheese recipes:
Cheddar Cheese Ball
Another Cheddar Cheese Ball
Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Cultured Cheddar

The Vegan Meringue group on is a great place for more aquafaba recipes as well.

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Vegan Tiramisu Macarons

1 Nov Vegan Tiramisu Macarons

Inspiration comes in the strangest places sometimes. I saw this recipe for vegan tiramisu last week and though it was gorgeous, and immediately wanted to make tiramisu macarons. Like most things in my life, it took about 3 days before I was actually able to make the attempt. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to infuse coffee liqueur into the shells, so I would suggest eating these with a shot of Kahlua.

Vegan Tiramisu Macarons
Since today is World Vegan Day, it seemed like a good day to share the recipe. I’m actually going to be bringing these to a work potluck later, and I’m sure they’re going to be well received! Who can resist chocolate, coffee, and buttercream!?
Vegan Tiramisu Macarons

As always, I have Charis at Floral Frosting, to thank for the macaron recipe. You also should take a look at the Vegan Meringue Facebook group for more amazing recipes. If you have trouble with the directions, try reading my troubleshooting guide for a little more in depth description.

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Candy Corn Meringues

26 Oct

Halloween is quickly approaching. I already have my costume (or three) and I’m in the spirit for Halloween themed treats and Hocus Pocus marathons. My husband is a huge fan of Halloween and decorates our house and yard accordingly.

I saw the idea for these cute little frosting filled meringues while searching for pumpkin meringues and couldn’t resist making them. All the fun of macarons with way less effort and failure!

Candy Corn Meringues

Be sure to check out the Vegan Meringue Facebook page for more information about aquafaba!

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Aquafaba Buns

19 Oct

Last week we celebrated my husband’s birthday. He’s a pretty neat guy, but one of his few flaws is his favorite foods-burgers. I have a particular dislike for most vegan burgers on the market these days. I’d take a black bean burger over a Boca Burger any day.

But, being the wonderful wife I am, I indulge his burger cravings occasionally, especially on his birthday. These homemade buns were perfect for burgers and actually made them palatable for me. We’ve been enjoying these buns for other sandwiches recently too!

Aquafaba Buns

Aquafaba works great as a binder in this recipe. Be sure to check out the Facebook page for more aquafaba recipes!

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Chocolate Mousse

8 Oct

I’m going to be completely honest in writing the post.  I actually screwed up this recipe in my own impatience, resulting in seized chocolate in my mousse. However, the recipe itself should work if you have more patience than I.

My advice to you is to stir slowly and add your chocolate to your meringue a little bit at a time. Also, definitely wait for it to be at room temperature. If you happen to screw it up like I did, just pour some more chocolate on top. Your husband won’t notice unless he’s a French chef.

And in that case, why isn’t he making you dinner?

Chocolate Mousse

P.S. Check our the Vegan Meringue Facebook group for more great aquafaba recipes!

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Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

29 Sep

What does one do when one has leftover cake?

Well, if you’re me, you bake it into an entirely new cake! I have gotten such a positive response on my birthday cake macarons, I wanted to make a birthday cake flavored dacquoise. I didn’t feel that hazelnut would go well with this flavor, so I chose to only use almonds to keep the flavor mild.
Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

Be sure to check out my other dacquoise recipes!
Birthday Dacquoise
Hazelnut Almond Dacquoise with Espresso Buttercream and Chocolate Ganache
Strawberry Buttercream and Lemon Curd Dacquoise

Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

Be sure to also check out the vegan meringue Facebook group for more amazing aquafaba recipes and Aquafaba.com for frequently asked questions.

Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

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