Archive for the ‘hydrocolloids’ Category

Texture updated and available for download

Saturday, February 15th, 2014


I’m happy to announce that a major update of “Texture – A hydrocolloid recipe collection” is now available for download. Version 3.0 of Texture features many new recipes, , more pictures (A big THANK YOU to all contributing photographers!), a new chapter on non-hydrocolloid gels + many minor additions and corrections. Given the many recent books about molecular gastronomy and modernist cuisine I have certainly asked myself: Is there a need for a revision of Texture? Since you read this I obviously landed on a “yes”. As a toolbox for chefs and amateur cooks I still believe that this collection is unique for several reasons: the ranking of recipes according to the amount of hydrocolloid used, the texture index and the total number of recipes (339 in total). To the best of my knowledge no other cook books have taken the same approach to collect and systemize recipes this way. And judging by the feedback I have received many chefs and food enthusiasts around the world have found Texture to be a useful resource in the kitchen (to which the 80.000 downloads from Khymos alone also testify). I do not regard Texture as a competitor to the numerous books available, but rather as a supplement. Inspiration for cooking is best sought elsewhere, but if Texture can inspire to experimentation with the texture of foods I believe it has fulfilled its mission.

Gastrophysics symposium in Copenhagen

Sunday, September 9th, 2012

On August 27-28 the symposium “The Emerging Science of Gastrophysics” was held at the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters in Copenhagen. The symposium poster said “interdisciplinary”, and with presentations by scientists in fields ranging from physics and chemistry to neuroscience and psychology I think it lived up to its name. In this post I share with you what I found interesting and useful from my own, subjective perspective. I must admit that I didn’t understand everything presented. Perhaps this is even a general challenge for the whole field. It illustrates how difficult it is to do science that is simple enough for chefs to understand yet scientific enough for scientists. César Vega and Ruben Mercadé-Prieto’s study on egg yolks is perhaps one of the best examples of a paper that manages to balance the two. A couple of the presentations were very successful at this, and I think that if we continue to meet at similar symposiums we will see many more papers that manage to catch the attention of chefs and scientists at the same time.

Throughout the symposium (more…)

Gelling ketchup with horseradish

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Mixing tomato ketchup with horseradish causes it to gel over night

A while ago a reader sent me a very interesting question regarding a gelled seafood sauce. It is made by mixing tomato ketchup with horseradish and his question was very simple: Why and how does this sauce gel? He speculated about pectin (which is present in tomatoes), but wondered why ketchup then doesn’t gel on it’s own? And he also noted that horseradish ground with water does not have any gel like properties. So how come they can form a gel when mixed together?

Update: Texture version 2.3

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

An updated version of “Texture – A hydrocolloid recipe collection” is now available for download (version 2.3). The longer I work on this, the more I realize that it will never really “finish” – there’s always more to add. And believe me – my todo list is still quite long (and I even have some feedback which I haven’t had time to incorporate yet). But I thought that since it’s more than a year since the last update, it was about time to share with you the things that have been changed. Major changes and updates include:

Pictures: This is the biggest visual change! Some recipes are now equipped with pictures which may give you an idea of the texture AND they indicate that the recipe has indeed been tested. But I need your help to add more pictures to the recipe collection (please follow the link to read more about how you can contribute pictures)! And of course - a big thanks to those of you who have already contributed your pictures!

Recipes: Recipes have been added and the total number is about 310 now. I’m getting a little more picky now with regards to which recipes I add. Ideally each new recipe added now should illustrate something new.

I should mention that I’m very grateful for feedback from readers and users of this recipe collection. Thank you very much with helping me improve the document! If you find typos, wish to comment on something or have suggestions on how to improve the collection, please do not hesitate to write me an email at webmaster (at) khymos (.) org or just write a comment in the field below.

Please head over to the download page for the links.

TFP 2010: Tomato gels with the pectin that’s there (part 6)

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Jean Yves Wilmot explains his tomato gels to Gene Bervoets

Making gels with fruits that are high in pectin is not particularily challenging. Addition of sugar promotes pectin gel formation with low methoxyl (LM) pectin, but the drawback is that you need a lot of sugar, typically around 50%. So this is only relevant for jams and marmelades. And if you try to gel tomatoes or carrots you may find this quite challenging, even if you add sugar. The approach chosen by Thomas Duvetter, a post doctoral researcher at Laboratory of Food Technology at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, was to use the pectin methyl esterase enzymes (PME) naturally present in tomatoes, carrots and oranges. The role of PME is to cleave of methyl groups, hence leaving the pectin more prone to calcium induced gelling. Equipped with this knowledge Jean Yves Wilmot presented a number of gels made with the pectin that’s already there.

“Texture” to be updated with pictures

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

Do you think “Texture” would benefit from some pictures? Now you are invited to contribute with your very own pictures to illustrate the recipes! (A big thank you to Chad Galliano who let me use his picture of foamed garlic oil!)

texture-frontpage-thumbA picture is worth a thousand words, and this is also true for recipes. Several of you who have downloaded “Texture – A hydrocolloid recipe collection” have asked for pictures and now it’s time to do something about that! A picture can illustrate texture well and is an excellent supplement to the descriptions. I therefore invite to you to contribute to the recipe collection by taking pictures to accompany the recipes. But before you run to grab your camera, please take a note of the following:

TGFWT #17: Frozen rosy apple foam

Thursday, May 7th, 2009

As I mentioned in the previous post I put the leftover rose froam from TGRWT #16 in the freezer and was surprised by the result. Inspired by this I thought I would extend this and substitute apple juice for water for TGRWT #17. As apple juice is quite sweet I started off with 20 g sugar, but once frozen it lacked sweetness and even was a litte icy, so I upped the amount to 40 g. The picture above may suggest that the foam could be served for dessert, but read the verdict before you make huge amounts of the foam.


TGRWT reminder and frozen rose foam

Monday, April 27th, 2009

rose-foam-spoon-2 Rose foam at room temperature

Just a small reminder that the deadline for the current round of TGRWT #17 is a little later than usual: May 8th. I took the picture above for last month’s TGRWT (where it was combined with chicken) and came to think that it actually qualifies for this month’s TGRWT as well. It’s rose foam on a spoon with apple, celery and almonds, and the foam is sprinkled with a little pepper.

As an experiment I tried to freeze the leftover rose foam and was quite surprised by the resulting texture. (more…)

TGRWT #16: Roasted chicken with rose foam

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009


For this month’s “They go really well together” event (TGRWT #16) hosted by Supernova Condensate I decided to leave the chicken untouched and focus on the rose component. I had long wanted to try Chad’s Lemon whip (which I’ve included in Texture) where lemon juice is thickened with xanthan and then whipped to a thick foam after addition of methyl cellulose. I started with water, a little sugar and about 10 g of rose water. Having added xanthan and methyl cellulose I tasted it and decided to double the amount of rose water, add some more sugar and add a little lemon juice for acidity. I can imagine that rose water comes in differents strengths so it’s advisable not to add all from the start.

TGRWT #16: Chicken and rose

Monday, March 9th, 2009


The next TGRWT challenge has been announced: chicken and rose! Head over to astrophysics blog Supernova Condensate and read more on how to participate in round 16. And do check out the excellent summary of the dark chocolate and smoked salmon contributions from TGRWT #15 over at Mex Mix.