Ask Amma

Aquafaba .. just for fun

In Recipes on 29 January 2021 at 7:21 pm
Cheap, fresh, easy and without emulsifiers or preservatives … aquafaba

Fad or food? Fascinating from a craft perspective, the whipping of garbanzo bean liquid to 5 times its original volume has captivated vegan internet. Is it worth it though?

If say 1 cup aquafaba you need to know whether I am referring to whipped or unwhipped. Because its volume increases fivefold when whipped. For clarity I am going to say “unwhipped aquafaba” or “garbanzo gel.” Or “chickpea gel.” They are all the same thing. Can you make aquafaba from other beans? Maybe. But I haven’t tried it and according to the internet they do not have the “neutral flavor” that one gets from garbanzos.If say 1 cup aquafaba you need to know whether I am referring to whipped or unwhipped. Because its volume increases fivefold when whipped. For clarity I am going to say “unwhipped aquafaba” or “garbanzo gel.” Or “chickpea gel.” They are all the same thing. Can you make aquafaba from other beans? Maybe. But I haven’t tried it and according to the internet they do not have the “neutral flavor” that one gets from garbanzos.

Aquafaba whipping in the stand mixer

Having whipped aquafaba using a hand mixer as well as with a stand mixer, I can report that in my experience it takes longer with the stand mixer. But of course when using a stand mixer your hands are free so you can do other things while it is whisking. A hand mixer is better for making a small quantity – and bear in mind a quarter cup of un-whipped aquafaba is going to become well over a cup after whipping. Since it is best eaten right away, no point making more than you can possibly use at a time. It is not easy to whip such a small quantity in the stand mixer. But if you need a voluminous quantity (~5 cups) of whipped aquafaba then feel free to start with ~1 cup of chickpea gel and let the whipping begin.

Most recipes say to whip for 10-15 minutes but I found it took longer in the stand mixer. If I do it more times I will report back with my findings but just to say – don’t give up if it is not done in 15 minutes, especially if you are starting with more than 1/2 cup of gel. When I used the hand mixer and started with only 1/4 cup of garbanzo gel, I think I got to soft peaks in 8-10 minutes, and stiff peaks in 12ish.

Here is a video that shows you the process minute by minute.

You can also add unsweetened aquafaba to batter to fluff it up. That’s all I have tried so far, it seems to be quite versatile.

Historical note: Aquafaba.com chronicles the history of this discovery and along the way one encounters this underrated video of two adorable French chefs, sans hat, who in the course of making dessert, whip up some chickpea water without saying much about it, as if this was just a done thing. This was in 2015 … I wonder if anyone has gone back and asked them about it.

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