Food Science

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One of my most favorite things. I was researching guar gum tonight (it is magical!) and found this story about a physics class at Harvard where the lab is a kitchen.

Anyway, guar gum - 8 times the thickening power of cornstarch and doesn't have to be made into a slurry to use. Heat stable! Freezer stable! Cheap! Good for you! I marinated a pound of boneless skinless chicken breast in a lemon ginger sesame dressing for 30 min, then baked at 325 F in a covered dutch oven with 3/4 cup of the marinade. When the chicken was at 160 F, I took it out of the sauce and whisked in 1/4 tsp of guar gum powder - it made a fantastic medium thick sauce.

Food science!

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 03:22 (ten years ago) link

Guar is used a lot in processed foods for that reason, right? I didnt know it was readily available, is it a powder or a goo, or...?

cathedral-sized jellyfish in your mind (Trayce), Sunday, 24 October 2010 03:23 (ten years ago) link

It's a powder, like flour, made from guar beans.

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 03:26 (ten years ago) link

The ideal gift for food science nerds: molecular gastronomy starter kit

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 03:27 (ten years ago) link

Also, Harold McGee has a new book out at the end of the month.

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 03:27 (ten years ago) link

Gotta get me some guar gum.

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Sunday, 24 October 2010 13:43 (ten years ago) link

If you can't find it locally, I got the Bob's Red Mill brand from Amazon. But I also didn't realize how little you actually use, so I could send you one of the 8 bags I've got in the pantry.

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 16:09 (ten years ago) link

lolol posts very much in character

I've got ten bucks. SURPRISE ME. (Laurel), Sunday, 24 October 2010 16:19 (ten years ago) link

heh :) I was speculating with Mr. Jaq last night about what it would take to open a grocery - now that the pantry is a huge section of the basement, I've got a lot of stock on hand.

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 16:34 (ten years ago) link

I would love one of the bags of guar gum, Jaq! If there's anything from around here that you can't get there, just let me know!

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Sunday, 24 October 2010 16:40 (ten years ago) link

I would swap you for some tomato seeds, if you're still holding those over year to year. Especially if you have heritage cherry tomato ones.

Jaq, Sunday, 24 October 2010 16:51 (ten years ago) link

Can do! There's one last vine full of Matts Wild Cherry tomatoes, and after today I'll have time to gather, clean and dry the seed.

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Sunday, 24 October 2010 16:56 (ten years ago) link

Gathered several hundred Matt's Wild Cherry tomato seeds this morning. These have an extra generation of proven hardiness bred into them — they volunteered this spring and summer from tomatoes that were pulled up in fall '09 and left to rot back in a corner of the yard. Also, these vines grew about 75 feet away from all my other tomatoes, so less chance of x-pollenation, and thrived in poor soil with no watering during a hot dry summer. Tough bastards.

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Wednesday, 27 October 2010 17:20 (ten years ago) link

Awesome - that's one thing I really love about cherry tomatoes, they volunteer like mad. Getting the guar gum packed up so I can drop it at the post office on Saturday.

I also just bought an enormous amount of agar-agar strips, trying to figure out what I can make vegan jello out of this weekend.

Jaq, Wednesday, 27 October 2010 18:01 (ten years ago) link

These seeds will take a few days of fermentation before cleaning, then a couple of weeks of drying, so be on the lookout for them I guess around Thanksgiving.

Like I say, I got a few hundred, so if any other ILCers want some of these, say howdy. They're the most intensely tomato-ey tomato I've ever eaten, esp if you eat them about 4-5 days underripe.

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Wednesday, 27 October 2010 18:20 (ten years ago) link

You guys are making me wish I had a place to grow plants! Basically the highlight of my year was hanging out in my husband's stepdad's garden last month & going all Pac-Man on his cherry tomato patch.

17th Century Catholic Spain (Abbbottt), Wednesday, 27 October 2010 18:22 (ten years ago) link

I'll take a few WmC!

dayo, Thursday, 28 October 2010 00:03 (ten years ago) link

I'd love some, but I suspect they'd never ever get past customs, sadly (Aus customs v strict on seeds/plant matter)

Sunn O))) Sundae Smile (Trayce), Thursday, 28 October 2010 01:00 (ten years ago) link

Also, tomato plantin' time is NOW, here, in fact I've already put in some romas.

Sunn O))) Sundae Smile (Trayce), Thursday, 28 October 2010 01:01 (ten years ago) link

Yeah, I'm not too sure about customs issues re: mailing any of them out of the country. (Or into California.) Dayo, would you want these sent to HK, or aren't your parents big gardeners in PA or NJ or somewhere like that?

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Thursday, 28 October 2010 01:08 (ten years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Like I say, I got a few hundred, so if any other ILCers want some of these, say howdy.

hahaha, more like 3500-4000. Dayo, did you want seeds sent to HK or in the US?

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Thursday, 11 November 2010 17:59 (ten years ago) link

I would like some!!!!

quincie, Thursday, 11 November 2010 18:08 (ten years ago) link

My initial boxing of the guar was decidedly flimsy and the post office lady convinced me to put it in a sturdier box - don't want that fine white powder gumming up the works. So I expect to get it on its way this weekend.

I might throw in some agar-agar too - it's amazing in a different way, and what they make those lychee and mango jelly cups out of.

Jaq, Thursday, 11 November 2010 18:32 (ten years ago) link

quincie, no problem, just ilxmail me an address to send them to.

yay for agar-agar!

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Thursday, 11 November 2010 21:32 (ten years ago) link

WmC, US! can I webmail you?

swagl (dayo), Thursday, 11 November 2010 23:45 (ten years ago) link

send me an ilxmail -- I'll get it immediately if not sooner

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Thursday, 11 November 2010 23:57 (ten years ago) link

done and done

swagl (dayo), Thursday, 11 November 2010 23:59 (ten years ago) link

got it, I'll send 1/4 teaspoon of the good stuff

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Friday, 12 November 2010 00:00 (ten years ago) link

I would like some!!!!

― quincie, Thursday, November 11, 2010 12:08 PM (5 days ago)

quincie, send me an address to mail you a few hundred of these things.

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Wednesday, 17 November 2010 01:08 (ten years ago) link

hey, got the seeds wmc! thanks again and I'll post pics when they're sprouted

dayo, Wednesday, 17 November 2010 01:18 (ten years ago) link

I hope they do well! This is their pedigree, btw -- http://store.tomatofest.com/Matt_s_Wild_Cherry_Tomato_Seeds_p/tf-0313a.htm

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Wednesday, 17 November 2010 01:33 (ten years ago) link

Package received, Jaq -- thank you! I'm going to open the unlabeled jar this evening and see if I can guess what it is.

Unfrozen Caveman Board-Lawyer (WmC), Saturday, 27 November 2010 00:15 (ten years ago) link

Ha! forgot to label it - 100% durian free!

Jaq, Saturday, 27 November 2010 01:12 (ten years ago) link

btw, thanks for the seeds! Arrived in Wednesday's mail - I got two of those upside down tomato planters to try, and also think I might stake some along the back fence.

Jaq, Saturday, 27 November 2010 01:13 (ten years ago) link


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