Taste

How To Make A 'Flax Egg,' The Answer To Vegan Baking

So easy.

The biggest problem with vegan baking is finding a good egg substitute. Anyone who knows anything about baking can attest to the amazing abilities of eggs, from working as a binding agent to whipping up into the tallest, softest cakes the world has ever known. It is very difficult to find an ingredient that will adequately replace eggs, but flax is your best bet.

Here's the good news: making a flax egg is easy. You'll want to be sure that the flax seeds are freshly ground -- the oils in flax seeds can go rancid if ground ahead of time, as they're extremely perishable (and then they won't taste good). Always grind them yourself. After that, it's just a matter of mixing ground flax with water. Minimalist Baker can help you figure out the right proportions and timing. They are master vegan bakers.

Here's the down side. While flax does wonders in place of eggs, it's no real egg. It tends to hold lots of moisture -- so think dense baked goods -- and doesn't contain the protein structure that eggs do, which help them rise. A flax egg therefore will never give you an angel food cake you actually want to eat. It is, however, great in pancakes, quick breads, brownies, muffins and cookies -- try it, you'll see.

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