Monday, December 22, 2008

Meringue and Streusel-Topped Sweet Potatoes

This recipe is a bit complicated, but by the time you're done, you'll have a vegan update on a traditional holiday dish.

Place 4 cups of cubed, peeled sweet potato (about a pound and a half) in a saucepan; cover with water and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Drain and place in a large bowl.

Combine the sweet potato with 1/2 cup coarsely chopped dried cranberries, 1/4 cup vegan cream (such as the plain creamer from Silk), 3 tablespoons maple syrup, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract, 1/4 tsp. cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. maple flavor, and the equivalent of one egg using egg replacer (such as Ener-G). The recipe said to beat with a mixer until smooth; however, I found it was easier to slightly mash with a potato masher first, then beat, since otherwise the chunks of sweet potato skittered away from the beater.

For the maple flavor, the most widely available is McCormick's, but I'm waiting back from the company to hear if it is vegan. "Natural flavors" and "sugar" in the ingredient list are both suspect. Instead, order the maple flavor from Nature's Flavors: You can be sure that their version is vegan!

Spoon the sweet potato mixture into an 8x8-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine 1/3 cup chopped pecans with 1/4 cup packed organic brown sugar, 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon melted vegan butter (such as Earth Balance), and 1/8 tsp. cinnamon. Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the potato mixture and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Now for the meringue! My endless search to replicate egg whites continues, but tonight I returned to good old Ener-G when I found a tip online that if you beat it a full 12 minutes it resembles the stiff peaks of egg whites. So I did beat the equivalent of 2 egg whites (a tablespoon of powder whisked into 4 tablespoons warm water), for a full 12 minutes (much to the annoyance of my two foster kittens!), and it seemed to be working. But when I added the sugar which the recipe called for (just over a cup), it got soupy again.

I would recommend beating in 1/2 a cup raw sugar maximum, one tablespoon at a time, and you might have more success than I did. Another alternative would be to add agar agar into the Ener-G mix along with the sugar.

Once your meringue is whipped, pour into a pastry bag fitted with a star-shaped tip (or a ziplock bag will do in a pinch). Pipe onto the potato mixture in a lattice-work pattern - as you can see from the photo, my piping skills are noticeably lacking!

Bake for an additional 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

The yield is 8 servings, of 1/2 a cup and 270 calories each.

A yummy scoopful!

sweet potato $3.68
dried cranberries $3.39
maple flavor $4.19
raw sugar $4.99

Update: I want to report that McCormick customer service promptly responded to my inquiry within 24 hours to say that the maple extract contains no animal products. Good to know for the future!

No comments:

The Vegan Pantry

  • Vegan yogurt - Whole Soy
  • Vegan milk - Silk
  • Vegan Feta - Sunergia
  • Vegan Cheese - Galaxy Foods
  • Vegan Eggs - Ener-G
  • Vegan Butter - Earth Balance