Looking for an oil-free Valentine’s Day treat?.. How about a sweet and airy cookie to share with your loved one(s). This recipe is a derivative of the classic aquafaba meringue cookies.
While technically these are strawberry meringue cookies, the strawberry flavor is subtle. However, the natural pink hue is such a sweet tint. The meringues themselves are made from the liquid found within a can of chickpeas. That glorious liquid has been coined the term, aquafaba. It has the miraculous ability to whip up to the consistency of an egg meringue.
I remember the first time that I whipped up the aquafaba… I was so shocked that it worked that I started screaming and cussing with joy. Who knew I was the type of person to cuss with joy! Ha! Anyways, I was thankful that I was home alone with no children nearby… mommy would’ve had to put LOTS of money into a swear jar.
To make these cookies:
The liquid should come out to about 3/4 cup, which is the perfect amount for this recipe.
To ensure that the sugar is super fine to combat any grittiness, I place organic granulated sugar in a blender. Just pulse the blender a few times. The goal is to make the sugar fine without turning it into powder sugar. For this recipe, you only need 1/3 of a cup of find sugar.
Next, pour the chickpea liquid into a stand mixer and add the sugar and a teaspoon vanilla, 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, and 1/8 teaspoon of cream of tartar. Turn the mixer to medium-high to high speed (with a whisk attachment). You really need to whip the dickens out of this stuff.
Now, it’s time to prepare the strawberries. Measure out 1 cup of dehydrated strawberries, and mash them. I used the back of a small rolling-pin. The goal is to make crumbs and larger pieces. Using freeze dried strawberries will naturally tint the meringues which is a nice alternative to conventional food coloring.
Next, dump in about 1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips. I used the Enjoy Life brand. It’s the only brand of mini chocolate chips that are vegan that I know of. I think I found these at Target or maybe it was Kroger..
Pipe small circles onto parchment paper or a silicone baking pad (they sure are handy!.. I own a couple of them). The meringues should be about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. You can pipe them close together because they will not rise or expand like conventional cookies. Place them in an oven preheated to 200 F degrees. Bake for 1 1/2 hours. This will make at least two baking sheets worth of cookies, with meringue left over. You can use the leftover meringue in hot cocoa or use it a topping for chocolate mousse.
- 1 cup dehydrated strawberries (crushed to small pieces and crumbs)
- 1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup liquid from a can of chickpeas
- 1/3 cup sugar (ground finely with a blender)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
- In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, pour in chickpea liquid, sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, and cream of tartar.
- Mix on medium-high to high speed for 10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 200 F.
- Once the liquid has been whipped into meringue, add the chocolate chips and strawberry crumbs.
- Gently fold them into the meringue.
- Place meringue in a piping bag (or gallon size plastic bag with a small hole cut in the tip).
- Pipe small rounds about 1 1/2 inch in diameter on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 1 1/2 hours until light and crisp.
- Let cool before serving.