Aquafabulous!: 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba (Bean Water)

After a year of hard work, my cookbook has been published!

Aquafabulous!

Yup, my cookbook, Aquafabulous!: 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba is now in bookstores! You can also order it from Amazon.ca or Amazon.com and Chapters-Indigo.

The book has 125 recipes featuring Aquafaba, and here’s a little taste:

Kale Caesar Salad with Roasted Chickpeas

Kale Caesar with Roasted Chickpeas

Photography:Tango Photography
Food styling: Éric Régimbald
Prop styling: Véronique Gagnon-Lalanne

 Coconut French Toast

Vegan Coconut French Toast

Photography:Tango Photography
Food styling: Éric Régimbald
Prop styling: Véronique Gagnon-Lalanne

Sushi Salad

Vegan sushi salad

Photography:Tango Photography
Food styling: Éric Régimbald
Prop styling: Véronique Gagnon-Lalanne

Banoffee Pie in a Jar

Banoffee Pie in a jar

Photography:Tango Photography
Food styling: Éric Régimbald
Prop styling: Véronique Gagnon-Lalanne

Vegan Macarons

Vegan Macarons

Photography:Tango Photography
Food styling: Éric Régimbald
Prop styling: Véronique Gagnon-Lalanne

Aquafaba literally means bean water — the water that’s drained off neutral-colored beans like chickpeas, white beans and cannellini beans.

Vegans have had limited choices when it came to baked goods. The existing substitutes did not have the chemical properties of eggs which made them integral for binding and leavening. But now there is the perfect substitute, and it’s aquafaba. And it’s blown open the world of vegan baking.

This collection of recipes, however, is not only for vegans. It is great for anyone who has an allergy to dairy and eggs. It’s proof that you can go egg-free and still enjoy delicious recipes. You will never miss eggs again. The general rule of thumb is 3 tbsp of aquafaba equals one egg. The protein in aquafaba, when mixed with some sugar and a pinch of cream of tartar, perfectly simulates egg whites. Neutral in taste, you don’t have to worry about your dishes tasting beany.

All your breakfast and brunch favorites are here–from omelettes, French Toast and pancakes to scones and crepes. You’ll enjoy satisfying and sumptuous Vegan Shepherds Pie, Vegan Mac and Cheese or for lunch or dinner. And you can once again enjoy Alfredo Sauce over your pasta. And the meringue desserts are not to be missed — Fruit Pavlova and Sweet Potato Pie to Lemon Meringue Pie. Chocolate Chip Cookies, S’mores Bars, Snickerdoodles and Chocolate Ice Cream are perfect for those children’s birthday parties where allergies are now a prevailing concern.

Now you no longer have to live without the culinary wonders that eggs and egg whites produce. All you need to do is open up a can of chickpeas, drain the water and you’re ready to go.

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Boulevard Provisions

Once upon a time, there was a girl. That girl enjoyed meeting her friends (usually other girls, but occasionally boys, too) for happy hour at various locations around the cosmopolitan city in which she lived.

And one of her favourite places for Happy Hour was Boulevard Kitchen and Oyster Bar, in the Sutton Place Hotel, in the heart of downtown Vancouver.

Boulevard has two distinct and different areas with very different vibes. The main dining room is sleek, modern and undeniably upscale. The lounge, however, with its dark wood, masculine leather couches and massive bar is cozy, especially if you get to sit near the fire.

Plate of vegetable curry with rice

Roasted Vegetable Curry

Let’s just say the girl spent a fair amount of time here.

And then there was a global pandemic.

Easy, casual meetings with friends in restaurants became a thing of the past. There was no more lolling around on couches in front of the fire drinking a glass of red wine and eating mushroom toast.

So Boulevard, like many restaurants, decided it needed to pivot. After all, people still need to eat, global pandemic or not, maybe even now more than ever.

So they created Boulevard Provisions, a way for the girl (and everyone else) to get their fix, just at home.

And you know what? It’s pretty great.

Yes, my living room lacks the warm crackling fire and the leather couches. It lacks my friends, too. But it sure was nice to have some of these familiar dishes I’ve grown to know and love in my own home.

The process was pretty simple. Just head to Boulevard’s website, and then click on the link for “Boulevard Provisions.” Here, you can scroll through a few categories: they sell raw ingredients (like fish or steaks) that you can cook yourself, but they also sell pre-cooked food that either fresh or frozen that you just take home and heat up. There’s soups and stews, they even sell charcuterie. Most of the dishes feed between 2-4 people, and there’s even options for desserts and cocktails! Yes! Cocktail kits! Oh happy days.

The cornbread that dreams are made of

Once you’ve selected your purchases, you just tell them when you want to come pick it up. Then you just pull into the driveway at the selected time and text a phone number, and a nice person comes out and puts the order in the back of your car. Super safe, so easy, and now you have delicious food to eat.

I highly recommend you order the cornbread. Cornbread is one of those seemingly “low brow” foods that actually takes a lot of finesse to do right, and this stuff is downright addictive. Actually, you should probably order two because you’ll likely consume the entire first pan on your own, straight out of the pan, because that’s how good it is. It is, not shockingly, their most popular item.

There are some really homey and tasty soups and stews. My understanding is that the bolognese is pretty world-famous, though I didn’t try it, as it is made with meat. However I know enough people who have tried it that assure me its hella tasty.

I did order the roasted vegetable curry, which is vegan. A creamy curry made with coconut milk and hearty, satisfying vegetables, I just tossed some rice in my rice cooker and heated the curry on the stove for a dead-simple, but very satisfying and comforting dinner. The leftovers have been great lunches.

So, you wanna feel like Chef Alex Chen is cooking for you in your own kitchen? You gotta check out Boulevard Provisions.

Boulevardier Cocktail

Yep, it’s fall. Like, aggressively fall. The leaves are gone off the trees, and the golden days of October are behind us, with nothing but rain and cold and dark ahead of us for the next few months.

This is the part of the year I’ve been dreading, to be honest. We’re 8 months into this delightful global pandemic and the onset of the second wave means that case numbers are climbing, even here in BC where we have been pretty lucky at keeping our numbers down.

Part of what has been a huge part of my self care in terms of mental health for the last 6 months or so is a daily walk, but the rain is threatening that, too. I’ve been managing to still squeak them in between raindrops, and I’m learning about gear and starting to invest in it.

Boulevardier Cocktail

Boulevardier Cocktail

Still. I miss my friends. My social circle, in terms of who I actually see, is very small, just two or three. It’s hard not seeing my friends, some of whom have little kids that are growing up so quickly. I miss hugs and intimate conversations over a glass of wine.

I’m not saying any of this to complain–realistically, I know this is a big boat with lots of us in it (virtually, socially distanced and wearing masks!). I also know, that, in the grand scheme of things, I have it much better than most. I have a stable home, a stable job, and Stanley Park as my back yard. My family is safe and none of them have been affected by COVID (knock on wood).

But just to acknowledge; these are tough times, friends. I hope you are well and hanging in there.

Also: alcohol!!

Okay, I’m kidding. Kinda. Mostly.

We gotta find joy wherever we can, right? At home, virtual happy hours are where it’s at right now, and I have a treat for you. It’s called The Boulevardier.

I only just discovered this cocktail recently, and let me tell you, I’m a fan. I’ve been working on restocking my bar, and I have recently purchased bourbon, gin, campari and both sweet and dry vermouth.

With these few ingredients, the possibilities for cocktails are almost endless.

And, of course, the Boulevardier, which is like a Negroni, but subs out the summery, lighter gin for a heartier, more cold-weather-friendly bourbon. And even though it’s new to me, it’s not new to the world. It has, in fact, been a thing since the late 1920’s.

It’s simple, but really the most perfect cocktail for fall. The bourbon is rich and bit smoky, and then the sweet vermouth balances out the bitterness of the Campari. Plus the colour is like a beautiful fall leaf. Salut!

Boulevardier Cocktail

Ingredients

  • 1 oz bourbon
  • 1 oz sweet (red) vermouth
  • 1 oz Campari

Method

  1. In a large glass, place a handful of ice and pour the bourbon, vermouth and Campari over it.
  2. Stir well, about 20 times.
  3. Strain into a new glass (a pretty one) with one of those large ice cubes if you have it. Garnish with an orange twist and a maraschino cherry.

 

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