Soybean Souffle

Vegan soybean souffle, that is. So no eggs.

The soybean souffle (though not necessarily the strictly vegan iteration) has a history longer than you’d think. In 1942 (the picture is of the revised 1943 edition), the Home Economics Bureau of the Department of Agriculture put out a circular on meat substitutes called “99 Ways to Share the Meat” that included the following:

Press cooked dry soybeans through a coarse sieve or grind in a food grinder for pulp to make soup, croquettes, loaves, souffles[….]

But even then, soybeans in souffles was not a new idea. Consider the following recipe from the March 30, 1939 edition of The Windsor (Ontario) Daily Star:

Today’s Menus

By Betsy Newman

Soybean Souffle
Buttered Cabbage
Apple and celery salad
Fluffy Layer Cake

I do not see why you cannot substitute plan navy beans for the soybeans in the souffle recipe, if you prefer. But we should all get used to using the latter. Experts tell us that soybeans contain many valuable food substances, and are economical besides. The recipe is taken from a department of agriculture bulletin.

Soybean Souffle: Three cups soybean pulp, three eggs, one tablespoon chopped onion, two tablespoons chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste are required. Beat yolks of eggs and add them to the other ingredients. Then fold this mixture into the well-beaten egg whites, and pour into a greased baking dish. Bake in moderate oven (325 degrees F.) for about 30 minutes, or until set and serve immediately.

Betsy Newman was syndicated throughout the U.S., so it’s likely she’s talking about the U.S. Department of Agriculture. (That, and that while technically the name of Canada’s entity is the Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food, it’s generally known as Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.)

A random fact for your north-of-the-border menu-planning: Canadian ovens retain imperial measurements, so even today, you can’t identify whether a recipe has a Canadian origin by the fact of the cooking temperature being written in Fahrenheit. (Although, since Canada didn’t go metric until the 1970s, that’s neither here nor there for this particular recipe.)

From a box sold in Chicago, Illinois.

Soybeans Souffle

Soak 1 cup soybeans overnight. Put into blender with water until makes 5 cups.

1 tsp. salt, 2-3 Tbsp. oil or more; add 1/2 tsp. rosemary, 1/2 tsp. savory (try nuts, garlic), 1/2 tsp. sage

Bake in an oven at 325 deg. for about an hour. Flat baking dish. Serve with tomato sauce.

Try on sandwich with mayonnaise and slice of tomato.

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