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– Sodium Alginate, Calcium Chloride and Sodium Citrate (250gm)
– Calcium Lactate 150gm
– 30ml Syringe x 2
– Spherification Spoon x 1
Sodium Alginate a natural product with the chemical formula Na C6 H7 O6, is derived from the cell walls of brown algae. It is used in the food industry as a thickener, to increase the viscosity of liquids and as an emulsifier.
The use of sodium alginate in the restaurant industry was first introduced by Ferran Adria who created the concept of spheres/pearls in his world famous restaurant ElBulli in 2003. The idea being that a liquid is thickened with sodium alginate and submerged in a bath of calcium chloride to create spheres, also know as the process of spherification. Ferran showcased his new concept on the restaurant menu in the form of his famous Rockmelon Caviar and Mango and Tea Ravioli.
It can be applied in other areas of cooking, for example in thickening sauces and creating gels. Unlike gelatine you can heat/cook your sauce or gel without it melting and becoming liquid. Used as an emulsifying agent and to increase viscosity, sodium alginate helps suspend particles within a solution, for example vanilla bean in a pannacotta will remain mixed throughout the mixture instead of sinking to the base of the finished product.
Calcium Chloride, CaCl2 is a compound of calcium and chlorine. It is a salt that is solid at room temperature and is highly soluble in water.
Calcium chloride tastes extremely salty and is used as an ingredient in some foods, especially pickles, to give a salty taste while not increasing the food’s sodium content. It can be used in many other ways and forms such as in sports drinks as an electrolyte or in the production of many cheese varieties such as brie and stilton.
In molecular gastronomy it is used in combination with Sodium Alginate and Sodium Citrate to create spheres, caviar, pearls or ravioli. This concept was first introduced by Ferran Adria who created the concept in his world famous restaurant Elbulli in 2003.The idea being that a liquid is thickened with sodium alginate and submerged in a bath of calcium chloride to create spheres, also know as the process of spherification. Ferran showcased his new concept on the restaurant menu in the form of his famous Rockmelon Caviar and Mango and Tea Ravioli.
odium Citrate is a saline like compound and slightly tart in flavour. Sodium citrate is used for flavour or as a preservative and acidity stabiliser. Sodium citrate is employed as a flavouring agent in certain varieties of club soda or soft drinks such with lemon-lime and citrus in them, contributing to their tart tastes. In ice cream sodium citrate prevents the fat molecules from coagulating together to give a smooth even texture.In molecular gastronomy it is used in combination with Sodium Alginate and Calcium Chloride to create spheres, caviar, pearls or ravioli. In the process of achieving spherification some solution may be to acidic, for example passionfruit juice or orange juice. With the addition of sodium citrate it is possible to better control this acidity, thus reducing the impact the solution on the final product. It is also possible to use sodium citrate to enhance products made from invert sugars, such as glucose and isomalt, which have no real flavour of their own. By adding a small amount it will enrich the flavouring agent added to the sugars. So in items such as wafers adding sodium citrate will add a slight tart flavour.
Lactate is used to achieve the reverse Spherification technique, which allows foods with high calcium content to be made into spheres or caviar. The advantage of using lactate is that is has no flavour and will not taint the final product.