Aquafaba - vegan meringue, Italian style
An easier, even vegan, way of getting the same superb results as with Italian meringue? Yes - it is possible: all you have to do is using the liquid found in any can with cooked chickpeas. This liquid - aquafaba - will form the "meringue" we need to elevate our sorbets! Aquafaba is the liquid formed when chickpeas (and other similar beans) are cooked in water: This recipe is based on the amount of such liquid typically found in a tin can, but if you cook your own, that aquafaba should also work.
For the aquafaba meringue
- About 150 ml (2/3 cup) of aquafaba (the liquid typically found in 1 can [of about 15-ounce/425 gram] of chickpeas)
- About 130 gram (about 2/3 cup) of sugar
- [A kitchen assistant/food processor equipped with a whisk]
For the raspberry sorbet
- 500 ml (2 cups) raspberries (fresh or frozen)
- 500 ml (2 cups) simple sugar syrup (made up of about 2 parts water and 1 part sugar; the exact proportions will depend on the amount of aquafaba meringue used)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- About 150-200 ml (about 0.6-0.8 cup aquafaba meringue)
Whisk the aquafaba in a household assistant for a few minutes until the liquid has stiffened somewhat and begun to turn white.
Continue whisking and add the sugar, tablespoon for tablespoon.
Whisk until the aquafaba has stiffened so much that it stays in the bowl if the bowl is turned upside down: Ready!
Any surplus aquafaba meringue can safely be stored in a box in the freezer and used in future sorbets (or put in the oven, to make meringues as long as you add some flavour to cover the one provided by the chickpeas ...).
The aquafaba created with this recipe should probably be enough for about three to four batches of sorbets. Remember: Just like as in the case of Italian meringue, too much added aquafaba meringue could turn your sorbet into a so-called spoom. While spooms can be nice in their own rights, this should preferably be a conscious decision, so don't go overboard with your aquafaba :-)
For detailed instructions on how to prepare the raspberry sorbet, go to this post: http://www.icecreamnation.org/2014/04/old-school-raspberry-sorbet/