Posts Tagged ‘suppliers’

Khymos marketplace

Saturday, March 29th, 2008


I just wanted to let you know that the Khymos marketplace is operative. You can now shop books, hydrocolloids, thermometers, scales, whippers, syringes, tubes, squeeze bottles, knives and more directly from this site. I’ve selected products that should be of particular interest for amateur cooks and professional chefs that are intersted in molecular gastronomy, molecular cooking and popular food science. The marketplace is powered by

Ingredients for molecular gastronomy

Sunday, January 14th, 2007

Since The fat duck and El Bulli were announced “Best restaurant” in 2005 and 2006 respectively by Restaurant Magazine, molecular gastronomy has received increased attention. This has also resulted in a greater demand for the ingredients used, especially various thickeners, stabilizers and emulsifiers. In Europe, these have been given E-numbers ranging from E400-E499. The other ranges include colours (E100-199), preservatives (E200-E299), acidity regulators, anti-oxidants and anti cacking agents (E300-E399, E500-E599) and flavour enhancers (E600-E699). The European numbering is a sub-set of an international list of food additives, the Codex Alimentarius.

alchemist's pantry
The Alchemist’s pantry – an early predecessor to that of the modern cook! (picture source)

Some of the most used ingredients in restaurant kitchens are listed below:

E322 Lecithin
E327 Calcium lactate
E331 Sodium citrates
E400 Alginic acid
E401 Sodium alginate
E402 Potassium alginate
E403 Ammonium alginate
E404 Calcium alginate
E406 Agar
E407 Carrageenan
E407a Processed eucheuma seaweed
E410 Locust bean gum (Carob gum)
E412 Guar gum
E413 Tragacanth
E414 Acacia gum
E415 Xanthan gum
E416 Karaya gum
E417 Tara gum
E418 Gellan gum
E422 Glycerol
E425 Konjac
E440 Pectins
E441 Gelatine
E461 Methyl cellulose
E463 Hydroxypropyl cellulose
E464 Hydroxy propyl methyl cellulose
E466 Carboxymethyl cellulose
E473 Sucrose esters of fatty acids
E474 Sucroglycerides
E621 Monosodium glutamate
E631 Disodium inosinate
E636 Maltol
E953 Isomalt
E1103 Invertase
E1400 Dextrin
Transglutaminase (no E-number as far as I know)

(click here for the full list)

Unfortunately these ingredients are not available in normal stores (with one exception: gelatine). Of course they are readily available in large quantities to the food industry, but lately suppliers of sub-kilogram amounts have appeared. I have collected a list of these suppliers – if you’re not on the list, drop me a note at webmaster((a))khymos((dot))org). Recent additions to the list include Kalys, texturePro and DCDuby.

One challenge with the different shops is that some products come with little or no technical specification. For cellulose ethers for instance, Dow provides an extensive range to industrial customers (more on this in a previous blog post on cellulose ethers), just to give you an idea of the product range available.

I should also add a closing remark om tools: some companies sell syringes, measuring spoons etc in “nice boxes”. However, these tools can most often be obtained for a fraction of the price at any drug store, pharmacy or kitchen hardware store.

Once you have stocked up with your cooking chemicals, the next question is – how do you use them? I would recommend the information provided by INICON on molecular gastronomy and textures (MANY pdf’s to download). Also, many of the suppliers have recipes on their homepages.

Awesome store for kitchen nerds

Saturday, September 2nd, 2006

I just received a catalogue from International Cooking Concepts, a Spanish store with a lot of nice tools, well suited for molecular gastronomy. It appears they don’t sell stuff over the internet, but I guess you can email them and ask for you local vendor. My local supplier of items from ICC is Gastronaut, which is a true shop for kitchen nerds.

Their selection includes the Kit Sferificacion by elBullitaller with which you can achieve many different textures in the kitchen. I look forward to experiment with this kit soon!

Also check out the pacojet and the gastrovac.