I'm not a vegan or a vegetarian, but I am someone who likes strange baking tricks. This is one of the strangest. I would have NEVER considered the water you drain out of the can of garbanzo beans (aka chickpeas) to be of use for anything, but, once again, I was wrong.
The viscous goo even has it's own Harry-Potter-esque Spell name - aquafaba. (The wand motion would be a circle, like you're opening a can, followed by a 180 degree turn of the wrist, to dump.)
Getting over the initial look and smell takes all of your baking bravery, but, if you stick with it, the end result is a fine meringue that can be used in cookies or a pavlova. [pictured] So the next time you make a batch of Humus or a three-bean salad, reserve those miracle juices and get to baking.
Let's get started!
Makes: One large pavlova or 2 dozen cookies
Time: 90 minutes
AQUAFABA drained from one 15 oz can of garbanzos or chickpeas
1/2 tsp CREAM OF TARTAR
3/4 cup SUGAR
1 - Preheat your oven to 200F or 95C
2 - Drain the AQUAFABA into the bowl of your stand mixer with the whisk attachment. Whip on medium-low for 3 minutes until bubbles begin forming on the surface of the liquid. (Yes, it starts out looking strange and smelling even stranger, but give it a chance.)
3 - Increase the mixer speed to medium-high. Add the CREAM OF TARTAR and a half tablespoon of SUGAR. Continue adding the sugar a few teaspoons at a time every 30 seconds while mixing. The whole process should take 7-9 minutes. Once the last sugar has been added, scrape the sides and mix for an additional minute on medium-high. (See image below)
4 - On parchment paper on a baking sheet, pipe or dollop and smooth into a 1 inch thick (2cm) disk, with the edges slightly higher than the middle. Bake for one hour. At the end of the hour, turn off the oven and crack the door with a wooden spoon or oven mitt. Leave to cool completely before topping with whipped cream, jam or curd, and fresh fruit.