Ask Niki: Dairy, egg and fat-free baking
Q: "My wife has just had to go on a dairy-free diet so I have found a recipe for muffins using banana, raisins and bran. To make it completely dairy-free, the suggestion is to use soy milk. But her chemist has said soy milk has more fat than trim milk, so that's 'out'. She can't have egg, either. Do you have any suggestions?"Doug, Dunedin
A: Good news. You can get reduced-fat versions of soy milk which are just like trim milk, with the same low fat – less than 1%. Try So Good Lite or Vitasoy Light.
When it comes to eggs in muffins, try a commercial egg replacer such as Orgran No Egg, or try using, in the place of each egg, half a small banana, mashed, or 1/4 cup apple purée or mashed pumpkin, or puréed dates. These will add a bit of sweetness, too, so you might want to reduce the sugar in your recipe, and they will give a denser texture to the end product, so try adding an extra 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder, too.