4 Top Guides on How to Use Agar Agar
How to Use Agar Agar?
Abstract: Agar is a hydrocolloid made from red algae, and is one of the most widely used seaweed-based gums. It has excellent physical and chemical properties and has many beneficial uses for the human body. Do you know how to use agar agar?
Agar is a hydrocolloid made from red algae such as Gelidium and Gracilaria and is one of the most widely used seaweed-based gums in the world. Common agar is translucent, amorphous powder, flakes, or strips, also known as agar powder, agar flakes, and agar strips.
Agar has excellent physical and chemical properties such as coagulability and stability and can form complexes with some substances, which can be used as a thickener, coagulant, suspending agent, emulsifier, freshness preservative, and stabilizer.
3.1 Guide 1 - Dissolve
Agar melts at about 90℃ and forms a gel when it cools down to below 40℃.
Therefore, the first and foremost step in using agar powder is to dissolve it in water, or in a liquid such as milk, juice, or tea.
It is best to soak the agar powder in water for half an hour, then heat and stir it until it boils, add water, sugar, and other ingredients according to your needs, wait for the agar to cool down, and then it is ready to be served.
3.2 Guide 2 - Amount of Addition
The amount of agar to be added should be done strictly according to the requirements in the baking recipe, or the addition can be adjusted according to the basic principles.
Agar vs Gelatin
Agar is the perfect substitute for traditional gelatin. And agar is much more powerful than gelatin: 1 teaspoon of agar powder is equivalent to 8 teaspoon of Gelatin powder.
Agar Powder vs Agar Flakes/Strips
1 teaspoon agar powder (5g) = 1 tablespoon agar flakes/Strips (15g)
for a hard set: 1 tsp agar powder per cup of liquid
for a soft set/wobbly: ½ - ¾ tsp agar per cup
for a 'jam-like' effect: 1/3 - ½ tsp agar per cup
for a dressing-like effect: ¼ tsp agar per cup
3.3 Guide 3 - Acidity
Agar should not be mixed with foods that contain acidity. This is because acidity affects the gelation properties of agar, as well as its taste and its nutritional properties.
If you have acidic fruits in your recipe, then you need to increase the amount of agar added or heat the fruits in advance to break down the enzymes and ensure that the agar gels smoothly.
3.4 Guide 4 - Storage
How to store agar agar powder?
- Lowering fat and blood pressure: Agar is rich in minerals and many kinds of vitamins, and the fucoidan in it has the effect of lowering blood pressure, which has a certain preventive effect on hypertension and high blood pressure.
- Improve constipation: Agar can stimulate the lining of the large intestine and promote excretion, which has the effect of improving constipation.
- Weight loss: When the agar is consumed, it will not be absorbed by the body and basically has no side effects, but people will feel full, which is suitable for people who want to lose weight.
- Heat relief: Agar has the functions of heat prevention, detoxification, and heat relief, which is a good product to eliminate heat in hot summer.
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