I have a complete love of the Spanish garlic mayonnaise called Aioli. It is the most garlic rich sauce anyone has ever created and will instantly whisk you to the Mediterranean. So my task today was to create a vegan version that needs no egg yolk. So now was my chance to see just how effective aquafaba is in mimicking eggs. Aquafaba is the soak water found in a can of chick peas or the water in which dried beans have been cooked once they have been soaked overnight. Aquafaba seems a bit of a poncy word so I’m going to call it egglixir as it seems a more apt way to describe what it replaces. It is often used to create stiff replacement egg whites but for me aioli uses an egg yolk so I need my sauce to be bright yellow or it won’t appear to be right. So I’m going to add a little saffron to achieve the shade of deceit I require. I want to serve mine along with an updated version of patatas bravos and wrap them in sourdough vegan pancakes for Shrovegan Tuesday. So this is a busy recipe but well worth the effort. I know I always say long recipes are worth it but they are! Plus Val ain’t eating anymore she’s just looking so these dirty disks are for you Val.
210g small tin of chickpeas (the soak water – the peas will be added to the vegetables later)
A pinch of saffron
50ml Spanish olive oil
Half a tsp of sea salt
Two cloves of smoked garlic
Pinch of turmeric
500g baby new potatoes
A sweet Spanish red pepper
100g sun blush tomatoes
50g mixed Spanish olives
Generous pinch of Spanish smoked paprika
200g chick peas
200ml white sourdough starter
250ml of Cashew nut milk
100g plain flour
Salt & Pepper
Drain the soak water from the chickpeas into a small pan and add the saffron threads. About a dozen if you want to count them. With my big fingers I just added a pinch. Turn on the heat and warm through but try not to let it boil. Then leave it to cool. In a mortar and pestle pound the garlic cloves and salt into a paste.
Take 3tbs of the now golden egglixir and pop it in a round bottomed bowl. With a hand held single electric whisk, foam the egglixir until it becomes stiff peaks, much like egg whites would.
Then add tiny drizzles of olive oil keeping the whisk spinning all the time until the full 50ml are incorporated into the mixture.
Add a pinch of turmeric to restore the golden yellow colour before finally adding the pounded garlic and salt paste for a final spin.
Fry the chopped onions in a little olive oil and when soft transfer to a glass casserole dish.
Next cut the pepper longwise and scoop out the seeds with a spoon and chop into fine slithers and fry. Once soft add them to the onions.
Next fry the quartered baby potatoes. While they are frying chop the olives and sun blush tomatoes and add them to the casserole dish.
Once the potatoes are ready generously dust them with the smoked paprika and toss them in with the other vegetables and stir. Pop them into the oven to keep them piping hot on 160C or gas mark 5.
In a glass jug measure the sourdough starter, cashew nut milk and flour with a little salt and beat with a hand whisk to create the pancake batter.
If your olives or sun blush tomatoes were in oil then use this to lightly cover a frying pan. Pour a little batter into the pan and move the pan to cover the base and over a medium heat allow the pancake to cook.
When the pancake begins to shift around in the pan if you shake it is ready to be tossed. Woohoo. Tossing seems to me to be the entire reason for pancake day.
Once the pancake is cooked on the second side slide it out and make a line of the hot vegetables and roll it up.
Place it on a baking tray and and pop in the oven that is now switched off to keep warm as you make the remaining pancakes. Serve with lashings of aioli. I apologise for my badly dressed final photo but I was in a hurry to eat them.