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Hi I really hope you can help me. I've decided to go from vegetarian to vegan but I have two recipes I can't live without and one I can't work out what to do, I'ts a vegetable bake which I make in a big casserole dish, it's about 50% vegetables mixed with flour eggs and olive oil, it rises (usually) and I cut it into slices. Without eggs it a)doesn't rise and b)falls apart. I can't find a similar recipe online and have read lots of articles but since I just follow the recipe and dont know whether the eggs are leavening/binding etc I don't know what to do. (sorry, new to vegan baking so please forgive the ignorance) i live in a rural area and can't get an egg substitute except online...what advice would you give me about baking soda/gelatin/other easily accessible substitutes since this is my toto emergency use leftover veggies/need dinner recipe ordering online products in advance isn't really workable
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Accepted AnswerMattieOfflineHi Hana!
I would definitely look into using agar powder to substitute for your eggs. Laurel is right in that eight eggs is a lot of eggs and nearly impossible to substitute in a vegan recipe without taking drastic measures. In this quiche recipe, the eggs are coagulating their proteins and acting as structure builders. Their coagulated proteins form a protein mesh, which consists of the main structure that holds it all together. Since most vegan egg replacers are starches, they're just going to absorb water and turn everything to goop.
Agar is a seaweed that forms a stiff network of complex sugars. These sugars are too big and complex to fit into the taste receptors on your tongue and be perceived as sweet. These longer sugar molecules are suitable for building structure more like an egg does. They should work suitably in quiche type recipes like the one you have here. Agar works similarly to gelatin (but the two are actually very different).
Like most vegan egg replacers, agar loves to hold onto water more than eggs so you'll need to probably increase your baking time slightly to compensate for this.
The hardest part is going to be getting the ratios right. You're still going to have to add something to make up for the lack of egg proteins taking up the volume of the quiche. I recommend increasing the flour content in the form of all-purpose flour or even finely ground cornmeal (or masa harina) to make up for the lost volume of egg. Masa harina's slightly savory flavor will make up for the loss of some of the egg flavor too. If you really wanted to retain the egg flavor, order some black salt (also known as kala nimak) online and use that instead of regular salt. Kala nimak contains hydrogen sulphide, which is one of the major flavor components of eggs.
It's going to involve some trial and error to find out how much agar to add. A little bit goes a long way. I recommend agar powder because it can just be stirred into food before heat is applied. Stay away from agar flakes. They need to first be dissolved in hot water and they never really seem to completely dissolve. I get my agar powder online. Here's agar that I recommend.
Good luck and let us know how it goes!
Accepted AnswerWOW! Eight eggs?!? No wonder you're having problems. Geez, and then you have the liquid released by your veg. I get it.
O.K. so I'm not fond of egg replacers but as a general rule I never try replacing more than 3 eggs at a time and at that, I would use more than one. So, off the top of my head and considering the amount of liquid you're dealing with I'd try half egg replacer (you can find recipes online, maybe even one here) and 4 Tbsp ground flax seed combined with 8 Tbsp warm water.
Seriously though, start small and go up. I like the looks of this and think I'll try a quarter recipe. It sounds delish.
P.S. Where's our resident genius when we need him anyway?
Accepted AnswerOk, the base recipe is 8 eggs, 3/4 cup veg or olive oil, 11/3 cup sr flour, 2 carrots (grated), 3 zucchini (grated), 11/2 grated cheese, 3 sweet potato diced all, 2-3 onions diced. You can use other veg but it does need either st potato or pumpkin to give some sweetness since there's no added sugar, I've used rice flour also, and replaced the cheese with a vegan cheddar or mozzarella. My difficulty is that it's not really s loaf since its so heavy in veg it's not really a bread but veg disguised by sticking it all together. I could cut down the veg content and it would be easier but that would defeat the nutrition side. Ps this is a savoury recipe so it won't taste like a sweet pumpkin muffin, etc. the recipe serves about 8 depending if its a meal/snack and takes about an hour @190degrees C. I've been doing test batches scaled down in muffin tins since it cuts down the ingredients and cooking time. It's a very wet recipe but all attempts with whole meal flour have been fairly disappointing, just in case anyone wants to try it. Broccoli didn't complement the flavour, cauliflower works ok if crumbled small, so does corn. None of the acidic veg work (capsicum Etc) it's not the prettiest recipe but it got veg down carnivores throats for 3 months without them noticing there was no meat!!!
Accepted AnswerI'd love to see the recipe. A/ because it sounds good, and B/ so I can try myself.
I would say, based on your gelatinous glue that maybe an egg replacer product like Ener-G may be the way to go. I'm thinking there may have been too much liquid released to go with the Tapioca egg. Of course, this is off the top of my head.
I just used that Tapioca egg to replace 3 eggs in a Gluten Free Gingerbread Coffee Cake and it worked like a charm.
There are many egg replacers. Mattie has one on the first drop down list (Vegan Baking Recipes) you can also find pretty much the same thing on the PPK and Fork and Beans blogs.
It is tricky, finding the right binder for the right application. You'll get there though!
Accepted AnswerOk, so tapioca eggs really failed. Recipe turned out like gelatinous glue. Thanks for the suggestion though and, since this can't be impossible if I find something that works ill post it since this recipe gets veggies into the fussiest of kids. Any other ideas I'm happy to hear them
Accepted AnswerIt would most definitely make it bind as it was initially developed as a replacement for xanthan gum in gluten free baking. It has made the recipes I've seen it in rise too much(cookies). Try it in mini format and see what happens because tapioca starch is a lot easier to find than many of the other esoteric replacements.
I don't know about anyone else but trial and error are what has worked for me.
Accepted AnswerYou might try some tapioca eggs. They're designed to bind and rise as I understand it. You can find them over at Cake and Commerce at http://www.cakeandcommerce.com/cake_and_commerce/2011/01/in-search-of-a-better-egg-substitute-for-egg-free-and-vegan-baking.html
Here's hoping they work for you.