Simply and crudely put, aquafaba is “bean juice.” More accurately, it’s the liquid leftover from chickpeas stored in water; and was named from the Latin words for both “water”and “bean”. I put chickpeas in salads all of the time, so I wish I had known that there was some other utility for the contents left inside of the can. What’s so amazing about this this slightly bizarre bean-derived liquid is that it functions as a great vegan substitute for eggs. Its properties closely mimic that of albumen, so it works well as a binder, thickener and emulsifier. It’s versatile, because it can be used successfully and undetectably in a variety of dishes and cocktails (whether you’re vegan or not), and works particularly well within recipes that require fluffy meringues. To calculate how much aquafaba you’ll need for your recipe: 3 tablespoons are the equivalent of one egg; 2 tablespoons are the equivalent of one egg white. Also, a standard 15.5 oz can of store bought chickpeas holds about 12 tablespoons of aquafaba.
I found a lovely macaron recipe posted by Jasmine Lukuku from Black Food Bloggers Club (adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s book: Baking Chez Moi: Recipes from My Paris Home to Your Home Anywhere). They are not only delicious, but absolutely beautiful. I love hosting English tea parties for my friends, so I might have to put these bad boys into circulation on my tea tray. Whatever the case, expand your culinary horizons and try using aquafaba in a few sweet and savory dishes. It’s a great option for people “who can’t take a yolk.” Da-dum-tum!