It has always been a tradition in our family to make home made figolli just before Easter. The kids loved to choose their shapes, and help decorate their own figolla when they were young. Last year, at Easter time, I had already been vegan for a few months , so I set about trying to alter my recipe to eliminate all animal products. It was not as difficult as some people may think. All you have to do is use a vegan margarine and replace the eggs. My original recipe called for egg yolks in the pastry and whites in the filling mixture. For my first attempt I replaced these with aquafaba and the results were perfect. For those who have never used it, this is the liquid in cans of chickpeas. You roughly replace one egg by 3 tablespoons of it. This year, I happened to have a pack of egg replacer powder in my cupboard, so I used this instead. The outcome was just as good. The figolli came out delicious, and no one is going to miss out on my home-made figolli.
If you want to try your hand at making them, here are the ingredients you will need for about 5 large figolli.
- The Pastry
- 500 g of plain flour
- 2 teaspoons of baking powder
- 250 g margarine
- 200 g sugar
- grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
- 2 caps vanilla essence
- 3 tablespoons aquafaba, slightly whisked, or if using egg replacer prepare according to packet instructions (to replace 2 egg yolks)
- The Filling
- 500 g ground almonds (pure, substitute or mix of both)
- 400 g sugar
- about 9 tablespoons aquafaba or egg replacer for 4 whites. You may need to add some more liquid until you get a spreadable paste.
I make 2 batches of pastry with these amounts as I find it easier to mix. If you prefer, double all amounts and make in one batch.
Being vegan doesn’t mean that we have to miss out on the good stuff. Happy baking.