Beginner’s guide to molecular gastronomy | health and fitness | Hindustan Times
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Beginner’s guide to molecular gastronomy

HT48HRS_Special Updated: Jul 07, 2016 20:18 IST
Compiled by Antoine Lewis
molecular gastronomy

Vodka shake with home made tea concoction, coffee liqueur apple juice and lime juice and served with earl grey tea fume in chai glasses at Farzi Cafe(Photo: Farzi Cafe)

Whipping siphons: Aluminium canisters that are designed for carbonating, infusing, or foaming liquids. The cap of the siphon is fitted with a nozzle and a compartment for a nitrous oxide cartridge. The nitrous oxide dissolves in the liquid under high pressure, aerating the contents into foam.

Spherification: The process of turning a liquid into spheres by first dissolving in a small quantity of sodium alginate, and dropping the mixture into a calcium chlorate or calcium glucate lactate bath. The droplets form into tiny balls that resemble caviar.

Gelification: A process that transforms liquids into gels. It allows modernist cuisine chefs to create dishes in a variety of unusual shapes like spaghetti or noodles from fruit juice, or solid cubes from clam chowder soup.

Liquid nitrogen: Nitrogen gas in a liquid state at an extremely low temperature. It causes almost instant freezing when it comes in contact with any food or drink. The rapid chilling means that the cooked food or puree retains its intense original flavour.

Sous-vide: A method of cooking meats, eggs, and seafood in vacuum-sealed plastic bags, with or without seasonings. The bags are placed in a temperature-regulated water bath at a much lower temperature. The food inside the bag cooks evenly, retains moisture, and is never undercooked.

Food dehydrator: A device that quickly removes moisture from vegetables and fruits, and sometimes meats. Since a food dehydrator uses a heat source and air flow, the process is much faster than normal air-drying, and results in more concentrated flavours.

Smoking gun: An equipment that looks like a small toy gun with a long rubber tube from below the barrel. It is used to infuse beverages, meats, fish, fruits, and desserts with a smoky flavour/aroma. The smoking chamber can be filled with wood chips, teas, herbs, spices, even dried flowers.