Whenever cooks find themselves with too much time on their hands, you can guarantee that something weird is going to appear on the internet. So it has proved once again, as Lockdown 2020 has given rise to the least bready bread ever created by man.
Disingenuously dubbed “cloud bread”, the new baking trend has seen TikTok cooks from across the globe share videos of fantastically coloured and super fluffy “loaves”, all made with surprisingly few ingredients. The Instagrammable recipes have gone on to become the online baking trend of 2020, with popular versions generating thousands of views on social media.
Although recipes vary according to taste, many of the most popular revolve around just three ingredients - egg whites, cornstarch and sugar. To make your own, these ingredients should be beaten together until they form stiff peaks, at which point the blend can be coloured according to preference.
This mixture is then shaped into a rough patty on a baking tray, before being cooked in an oven for about 25 minutes. The end result looks like a mix between meringue and cotton candy, but with the same bubbly air pockets you might find in a bag of Kingsmill.
Watch TikTok cook Tabitha Brown make 'bacon' from carrots:
One of the reasons cloud bread has been such a hit is its supposed health benefits. The dish has proved particularly popular with keto dieters, as it is completely carb-free while still retaining some semblance of starchiness. This has led some to claim that it can help fill the hole left by real bread without throwing you out of ketosis.
Although the basic blueprint might strike some as being a bit bland and tasteless, some cooks have come up with ways of adding extra spice to the recipe. Popular versions include ingredients like strawberry extract and almonds to create a subtle range of flavours. It might look like a sorry excuse for buttered toast, but there’s no doubting that cloud bread has captured an audience.