“Vegan baking” is a phrase that strikes fear into the hearts of quite a few bakers. Not my heart, of course, but some hearts. This is because successful baking often relies on the properties of butter, milk and eggs to produce a good result – and you can’t use any of these when baking vegan. This doesn’t mean that you can’t make wonderful baked goods without the use of dairy and other animal products, just that you have to think outside the box a bit. The Joy of Vegan Bakingis a cookbook that should demystify vegan baking and practically guarantee mastery of the subject.
The book is almost 300 pages long, with recipes from everything from crepes and cakes to mousses – many of which use eggs as a crucial component in their non-vegan versions. A lot of time is taken to explain the functions of the standard non-vegan ingredients and even more is spent on the how and why certain vegan items are used as substitutions, or how ingredients can be omitted entirely. Following along with the recipes will turn out great results, but reading through the book should give you a good enough idea of how vegan baking works in general to apply the principles on your own, if you want to.
The recipes themselves are straightforward and don’t call for too many specialty or hard-to-find ingredients. In fact, your regular grocery store should have almost everything you need. Serving suggestions and baking tips accompany most of the recipes. You can take a look at some samples from the book here for a bit of a preview.