All about Chickpeas and Aquafaba
Chickpeas are amazing beans that don’t get nearly enough credit in this world. They can easily be used for every single meal of the day. Chickpeas can be used in savory recipes once they’ve been cooked (much like you get when you buy canned chickpeas) – they do great in curries, wraps and salads. They can even be blended up and used to make hummus for dip. This is just the beginning though, because if you use chickpea flour (you can buy this at the store, or make it yourself by pulverizing dried chickpeas in a food processor), then your recipe repertoire has just doubled. Now you can make things like falafel and vegan quiche. But wait, there’s more: You can boil those dried chickpeas to make cooked chickpeas, which can be used in recipes, but also the liquid left over can be used in place of egg whites to make amazing vegan desserts.
What is Aquafaba?
The liquid left over after cooking chickpeas (or any other bean for that matter) is called Aquafaba – which translates to “Bean Water”. It is basically a magical, vegan secret ingredient that you can use to make things like meringue and macarons. You can use aquafaba from canned chickpeas, though you will find that consistencies can be quite different from brand to brand, and you may need to reduce the liquid down yourself to be able to whip it into stiff peaks easily. You can also make your own aquafaba if you cook your own chickpeas.
Cooking your own Chickpeas vs. Buying Canned Chickpeas
Cooking your own chickpeas is certainly a more cost effective way to enjoy chickpeas. You can often buy nearly a kilogram of dried chickpeas for the same cost as one or two cans of cooked chickpeas. Dried chickpeas will more than double in size once they have been soaked and cooked. Don’t be fooled by their small size. that bag of dried chickpeas could last you quite a while. The only real downfall of using dried chickpeas, is that you need to do some pre-planning of your meals. You should soak your chickpeas for at least six hours, and then they need to be cooked for an hour and a half until they are tender and ready to eat. So, if you only have dried chickpeas on hand, and then realize the recipe that you’re halfway through cooking calls for a cup of chickpeas, you’re our of luck. This is why I like to keep a few cans of chickpeas on hand; for last minute recipe ideas, and just in case. When I remember to however, I soak a cup of chickpeas overnight so I can cook them the next day before I need to use them.
How to Cook Chickpeas and Make Homemade Aquafaba:
Yields: 2 1/2 Cups Chickpeas and 1/2 Cup of Aquafaba
1 Cup Dried Chickpeas
3 Cups Water for soaking
3 Cups Water for boiling
Soak 1 Cup Chickpeas in 3 Cups of water overnight (or for at least 6 hours). Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then add them to a medium sized pot with 3 cups of water.
Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce the heat to low. Let simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
If you are going to throw away the aquafaba anyways, you can skip the next step; your chickpeas are now cooked, and you can store them in the fridge or use them right away. If you are going to use your aquafaba to bake with, you will want to reduce the liquid. Follow these steps to reduce your aquafaba:
Remove the chickpeas from the pot and set aside. Bring the remaining liquid to a boil and cook for approximately 10 minutes, until there is 1/2 cup of liquid left.
Store the chickpeas together in the liquid, in a sealed container in the refrigerator.
- 1 Cup Dried Chickpeas
- 3 Cups Water for soaking
- 3 Cups Water for boiling
- Soak 1 Cup Chickpeas in 3 Cups of water overnight (or for at least 6 hours).
- Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then add them to a medium sized pot with 3 cups of water.
- Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce the heat to low. Let simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
- Remove the chickpeas from the pot and set aside.
- Bring the remaining liquid to a boil and cook for approximately 10 minutes, until there is 1/2 cup of liquid left. Store the chickpeas together in the liquid, in a sealed container in the refrigerator.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 54Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 14mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g
Nutritional Values are estimates based on 1/2 Cup Servings