A gelling agent that is derived from seaweed, making it a great de facto replacement for meat based gelatin, and ideal for vegetarians. It’s also a traditional ingredient in gelled sweets from Japan and Southeast Asia.


Typical use involves adding powdered agar to a cool liquid and then bringing it to a boil. The gel sets when the liquid cools to around 95%F. A wonderful property of agar  is that it remains set until the reheated liquid reaches 185F, meaning you can have fun serving a gelatin that is still gently steaming.  Only a small amount of powdered agar is needed; 0.5 percent by weight of agar for a pretty firm gel (that is one half of one percent). Agar is able to replace eggs in sauces, pudding, and custard dishes. It will not replace the flavor of eggs, but the molecular binding properties work to create an item of the same consistency, which is very important for vegan bakery products.

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