So, I’ve been doing a fair bit of trial on agar agar these few weeks, and finally decided that I should give this odd but very cool looking japanese dessert a go.
Mizu shingen mochi, otherwise known as unicorn tears, or water mochi is basically very lightly set agar agar (kanten, in japanese) into a ball, and served with powdered soy powder and kuromitsu (a dark toffee-esque syrup). Google it. It looks amazing.
Anyway, I went and bought myself an ice ball mould and a little funnel, and set about doing my first try.
Since agar agar is so varied, I couldn’t really find any recipes that sounded logical to the specific brand that I have. The best advice I found was in a blog where they suggested using around 70%ish more water on top of the usual amount you normally would.
So in a pot, I added 5 cups of water (as apposed to my usual 3), a packet of agar (7g), some rock sugar to taste, and a little dash of vanilla.
Bring it to a boil. This step is very important. Agar agar needs to reach a rolling boil for a few minutes to be able to set when cool.
Pour the liquid into the moulds to set. As you might have noticed, my little iceball mould is nowhere near big enough to hold 5cups of liquid, so I had to scramble around for some other containers/tumblers.
Plop them into the fridge to set and cool.
I couldn’t get kuromitsu at Japan Center London, so had to prep my own. For the dark toffee, a slightly bitter caramel, I used palm sugar as the main flavour. Combine and melt 70g palm sugar, 40g demerara, and 1/2 cup of water together. It might seem rather watery but will get thicker when it cools. It should keep for around 3 months. If you can’t be bothered, just use maple syrup.
An hour later, the time of reckoning has come.
Right… not so much water droplet, more like a golf ball.
Should have been:
Mine, not quite so elegant… Oh well…
Agar : water ratio [fail]
Tastes great though. Darkly sweet syrup, nutty soy powder and melt in you mouth cool jelly makes a great combination.
We had a blue themed foodie thing at work this week. With that thought in mind, I experimented on agar agar and came up with this.
Blue curacao, gin and blueberry agar agar (kanten).
Ended up doing a 2 tiered jelly of blueberry juice at the bottom and this on top.
So here’s a quick rundown on how I did the boozy part…
1 cup – booze of choice. Mine was a mix of Blue curacao and gin
2 cups – water (or juice, if preferred)
3 teaspoons of agar agar powder (kanten) – rough rule of thumb, a teaspoon for a cup of liquid
1/3 cups of brown sugar (or to taste)
a few drops of vanilla essence
a handful of blueberries
Bring base liquid (water/juice) to a boil, add sugar and stir until melted.
Stir in agar agar powder and let it boil for about 3-5 minutes, stirring all the while. This part is very important because agar agar needs to be brought to a boil for it to work.
Take it off the flame and add the booze and vanilla.
Pour into mould, and add blueberries.
Leave to set.
Agar agar sets in room temperature, but is much nicer cold. So stick it into the fridge for at least an hour. To serve, tip out jelly, cut to desired size and add whatever it is you want with it. Or have it as is.