Your family will be impressed with these little droplets of balsamic vinegar resembling caviar…
This is another fun experiment to make in your kitchen with agar-agar…and I can assure you that the whole process is easy and entertaining as I have used similar method to make Honey Caviar which you can find here.
You just need to make sure that you have all the “apparatus” and you are ready to go. These little ”caviar” can be kept in the refrigerator for a while since they a mainly made with vinegar. This recipe was mostly based on this one.
I have used these “caviar” in all kind of salad and even with strawberries…
100g balsamic vinegar
1.5g agar-agar, depending of the quality (1.5%)
Approximately 1 to 1 ½ cup of oil, such as corn, canola or olive oil.
Place the oil in a glass container and in the freezer for approximately 30 minutes. The taller and skinnier the glass the better, as you want the droplets of the balsamic vinegar with agar-agar turning into gel before reaching the bottom of the glass.
Place the balsamic vinegar in a small pan and sprinkle agar-agar on it. Bring the mix to boil by stirring constantly until all the agar-agar is well dissolved.
Remove the balsamic vinegar/agar-agar mixture from the heat and let it cool down to approximately 55C (130F).
Remove the cold oil from the freezer and place the glass jar in an ice water bath.
Fill a syringe or counter drop with the hot/warm balsamic vinegar mixture and expel, drop by drop into the cold oil. As the droplets of balsamic vinegar/agar-agar hit the cold oil it will solidify and fall to the bottom of the glass jar.
With the help of a slotted spoon, carefully remove the “caviar” and gently rinse with water.
Drain well and store in the airtight container in the refrigerator.
Did you know that agar-agar exhibits hysteresis? Meaning that agar-agar has different melting and solidifying temperature, melting at approximately 85 Celsius degree (185F ) and solidifying at 32-40 Celsius degree (90-104F). Due this property agar-agar is stable as gel and widely used in cooking such as in fruit preserve, ice cream, custard, pudding, soups and many others.