Xanthan Gum was discovered during the 1950s by American scientists and is essentially the byproduct of a bacterial fermentation. Like yeast fermentation produces alcohol and carbon dioxide, Xanthan Gum is produced from fermented Xanthomonas Campestri. Like in bread and alcohol production heat is used to kill off the bacteria after the fermentation and then the gum is collected and dehydrated.
Xanthan Gum, like other additive must then be hydrated in water. However, unlike with other additives Xanthan Gum does not require heat although it can withstand a range of temperatures as well as pH and the presence of salts and alcohol up to 60%.
Xanthan Gum is a thickener and stabilizer, but it does not form gel. Xanthan Gum can be used to stabilize emulsions and give sauces a thick and cream texture. One interesting fact about Xanthan Gum is its ability to change viscosity. When agitated, a mixture containing Xanthan Gum, will become liquid. When allowed to rest it will then become more viscose or thicken.
Aside from emulsions and sauces Xanthan Gum can be used in milkshakes to produce high fat mouth feel without the presents of high fat milk and in ice cream, where it prevents the development of ice crystals and makes for a creamier texture.
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More broadly speaking, Molecule-R aims to facilitate public engagement in the modernist cooking experience. New technologies are now more integrated into the world of arts than ever before. Multimedia displays are set up in sculptures and exhibited in museums, the unexpected strength of new materials makes it possible to push the boundaries of architecture, and the public can now decide the ending of certain theatre plays using their smartphones.
The culinary arts are no exception to this trend and creative chefs are now inspired to incorporate cooking techniques and ingredients borrowed from the world of food science. For more than a decade, renowned, award-winning restaurants have been serving exotically flavoured caviar; colourful, gravity-defying foams; bubbles that explode with flavour or even recreations of complex dishes in the form of simple spaghetti.
Obviously, the application of modern cooking techniques does not ensure a successful dish, but, as in all art forms, new technologies support the artistic process by allowing the artist to push creative boundaries. Like any artist, creative chefs provide their audience with an experience, and regardless of the technique, what matters most is the quality and intensity of this experience.
Arising from the fusion of food science with culinary arts, molecular gastronomy is a gourmet trend whose artisans embrace innovation in order to create dishes that are truly multi-sensory experiences. This cuisine is not at all opposed to the great culinary traditions; instead, it builds on past achievements and broadens the horizons by using resolutely modern techniques and ingredients. A new culinary era has arrived and is now accessible to amateur chefs through this great range of product from Molecule-R.
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