New cookbook perfects plant-based recipes for classic desserts

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Seattle-based culinary writer Laura Crotty loves old cookbooks. So for her debut cookbook, The Little Vegan Dessert Cookbook: Vintage Recipes Revised, she decided to comb through her extensive collection and select the best recipes for cookies, cakes, doughnuts, bars, and breads and recreate the recipes to work within a plant-based vegan diet.

Laura walked us through making one of the recipes in the cookbook – a simple and delicious coffee cake packed with flavor and aromatics that will be perfect for the holidays.

She also introduced us to a vegan’s bakers secret weapon – Aquafaba. “Aquafaba” is a fancy name for the liquid that you find when you open a can of beans. Really! Vegans have discovered that this liquid has the same properties as Eggs and produces the same results in baking. Vegan Egg Substitute: 3 tbs of Aquafaba (Bean Liquid) = 1 Egg

Laura’s Recipe for Coffee Cake
From Laura Crotty’s The Little Vegan Dessert Cookbook Vintage Recipes Revised. Yield: 12 slices

Every baker has their own version of this cake. Mine is adapted from American Woman’s Cookbook, dated 1962, with the addition of pumpkin, spice, and a crumb topping.

3/4 cup spelt flour
3/4 cup oat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground, dried ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons aquafaba
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin, packed
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Crumb Topping
1/4 cup non-dairy butter, softened
1/3 cup coconut sugar, packed
1/2 cup spelt flour
1/3 cup of walnuts, chopped fine

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan.
Mix the flours, baking powder, spices, and salt in a large bowl.
Beat the aquafaba and coconut sugar in a medium bowl and add the pumpkin, oil, and vanilla. Mix until smooth.
Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just moistened and the batter comes together.
Fold in walnuts and spoon batter into pan.
Cream the butter and coconut sugar together.
Add the flour and stir until crumbly. Mix in the walnuts.
Sprinkle over the batter and bake for about 50 minutes. Cool completely on rack before slicing.

Segment Producer Derek Haas. Watch New Day Northwest 11 AM weekdays on KING 5 and streaming live on Contact New Day.


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Marni D says:

FYI: Laura did not have a clear answer on why the egg substitute was called Aquafaba. The word Aquafaba is from Latin: aqua (water) and faba (bean).

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