View Full Version : Does anyone here use agar?
01-18-2008, 10:11 AM
If so how do you prepare it?
I need a quick thickner:)
01-18-2008, 11:21 AM
I have used it a lot in order to firm up vegan cheeses so they can be sliced, etc. You have to soak it in cold water and then bring it to the boil to dissolve. Obviously not raw. I haven't tried to see if it can be done with just warm water. I would try it with the powdered agar though: soak it first, then bring it to whatever warmth you are comfortable using to dissolve it. Then it would have to go into the blender with the other ingredients which would make sure it was well emulsified. If you try it, post your findings for us, will you? I can't do it today, but I intend to soon, so I will let you know what it does for me.
Personally, I would feel okay about warming it as much as needed to make sure it was dissolved. I don't know if that HAS to be boiling or if less heat would suffice. Just dissolving isn't the main goal. It has to be able to jell after it cools. So that could mean hot water. I do have a feeling that it might work in my blender. I have the KTec Champ and when I make a raw soup I put it through 2 50-second cycles and the soup ends up pretty warm. Just the speed of it generates heat. I would certainly prefer to do it without boiling it though. It is a seaweed and must have valuable nutrients that would be better used raw.
01-18-2008, 09:41 PM
I use agar. I think of it like a spice or condiment. I have no qualms about including, say, 1 tbs. of cooked seaweed a week in my otherwise raw diet.
To prepare it, dissolve 1 tbs. of agar in 1/4 cup of water for every cup of fluid that you have to thicken. Boil the agar/water mix, let it simmer for a few minutes, then take it off the heat and stir in a few ice cubes (to cool it to 120 degrees before it gels). Mix the cooled agar with what you want to thicken and there you have it!
Make sure not to use it with peaches, spinach, cacao, pineapple or really acidic foods as it won't set.
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