Seriously though can we get real about how many people are going veg! I have personally been a pescatarian (no meat except fish) for almost 6 years now? Honestly am not that kind of gal who kept track of the day I went veg(ish) and so I am fuzzy on the details. I kind of just one day stopped. Like that. Saw waaaaay too many disturbing images online about factory farming and boom. I was done.
Enough about me.. Lets talk Vegan/Vegetarian/Dairy Free baking. You would be surprised to know that pretty much all of my baking is lacto-ovo vegetarian (so no meats but has dairy) What?? Which is pretty awesome and you would also be surprised to know that making baking vegan is also surprisingly easy and can yield some pretty rich earthy flavours if done right. Whats the key?
It's all in the mixing. If you have a good idea of what ingredients can be swapped for what you can pretty much make most recipes vegan/dairy free however it is very important that you are aware of how you put these recipes together. From my experience it is imperative that you do not over mix a thing! I actually do most of my vegan baking with just a wooden spoon and a bowl. You will not have the fats to stabilize your goods so you will be relying on the chemical reaction of baking soda and vinegar or the aquafaba magic (reduced chickpea water - stay tuned for another post about this game changer). By using the muffin method you can ensure everything is mixed gently.
So what is Earth Balance? It is a naturally vegan and gluten free butter substitute that can be used in baking and cooking. There are a couple different products they make and I can attest to at least two of them being awesome :P I haven't actually seen or tried many of the others here in Calgary.
We are going to focus on my favourite. Earth Balance Soy Free.I have tried this product alongside Earth Balance's standard "butter" in the yellow container though I find I yield better results with the Soy Free. When using it in baking there is not too much of a difference between the two however I notice a significant difference in texture when making my American buttercream.
For this buttercream I use a mixture of room temperature Earth Balance Soy Free and equal parts Crisco vegetable shortening. I then add icing sugar and vanilla to taste depending on my application. I add a bit of almond milk to give it a super creamy consistency. Spread on your favourite dessert and enjoy!
When using in baking just substitute it in the place of butter in most recipes and voila!
Check out our new Facebook group for upcoming vegan recipes and one on one guidance with your vegan baking!
Life's a treat and we make it sweet!