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Need help, recipe develpoment fun stuff.

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I'm looking to do a vegan pear brulee for an upcoming tasting menu, so far I am at a loss as to how to accomplish this. I can get a nice custardy base but as for gelling it I cannot seem to find that magic ingredient to get it to set correctly. Gelatin is out of the question and I have been thinking along the lines of using an agar agar mix. I do have access to things like methylcellulose and the like but am unfamiliar with their usage and setting strengths. I am looking to have this set up into 1/2 inch tubes then slice and brulee the set "custards" For the base I would like to place this tube into a cradle made of pear chips. Garnishes at this point are as of yet undecided.
So far this is the base I have been playing with but the tubes melt too much when they are bruleed.

12g agar-agar powder
1.5 litre water
225g-250g sugar, or to taste
125g palm sugar chopped
2 teaspoons vanilla essence, or to taste
3 ripe pear, peeled and diced

Method

1. Dissolve agar-agar powder in 1.5 litre of water in a pot.
2. Add sugar and bring to a boil. Remove pot from heat.
3. Combine agar-agar mixture, avocado, vanilla essence in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
4. Pour 300ml of agar-agar mixture with palm sugar till dissolved. Pour equally into individual moulds and set aside till the surface start to firm up.
5. Pour the rest of agar-agar mixture into individual moulds and leave to cool before refrigerating until chilled.
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post #2 of 13
Does anyone know if there is any soy based alternative to heavy cream? If so, you may be able to go that route. You may also be able to make a hard carmel, like a brittle or a toffee, inside of a round cookie cutter and place it on top instead of using a real Brulee.

Just a thought.
Dammi un coltello affilato e vi mostrerò l'arte più belle del mondo.
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Dammi un coltello affilato e vi mostrerò l'arte più belle del mondo.
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post #3 of 13
Have you considered using high acyl gellan gum to the mix? Gellan gum is heat stable and will also thicken the "custard". I suggest mixing it with the agar to get the set texture you want. I would suggest starting it at around 0.2% or so and experimenting along those lines. Gellan gum is easily incorporated simply using an immersion blender.
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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post #4 of 13
You could try doing the brulee part separate from the the agar gel. The blow torch, or worse the broiler, will mess up your clean lines if it stays together at all.

Forget soymilk. Use a nut milk. Almond is a natural.
post #5 of 13
Must agree with Chef Blue, Gellan is the way forward, very heat stable- thermoirriversible (usually requires 0.4-0.7% to gel- and will become self-supporting at 0.5%). I've seen people set fire to their icecreams which was set with gellan (and it didn't melt!). Also totally vegan as its a seaweed extract

Sodium Alginate is another pretty stable thermoirriversible hydrocolloid used for gelling. Although Gellan is arguably more stable and easier to get.
post #6 of 13
I think the person who said to do the brulee separate has the right answer. Before the days of blow torches in the kitchen, it was common to put sugar on a foil-lined sheet pan and then under the broiler. We'd spread the sugar in circles on the pan in an even layer. Once the carmelized sugar cooled, we'd peel the sugar off the pan, put the disc of sugar on top of the custard and smack it with a spoon to shatter it. We'd do that just before serving so the sugar wouldn't melt from moisture.
post #7 of 13
You may want to consider trying clear gel.
I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Well it does not matter anymore, my position has been "eliminated" after 10 years I was eliminated, the gellan did work BTW. Thanks anyway.
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post #9 of 13
Chef rat I'm extremely sorry to hear that... my condolences to yourself and your family.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
They offered me 1/2 my pay to stay on as a pastry cook thanks but no thanks.
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post #11 of 13
Thats a bullshit offer they put out there knowing there is no way that you would take it, but allows them to say they didn't fire you- you just refused a different position!

Its always sad seeing good people get cut lose to keep the cheaper, less experienced/knowledgable guys, who always has less passion than the good guys. I've seen it too many times in this industry- its always the restaurant that suffers- they compromise too much!
post #12 of 13
Wow, that sucks big time... my sympathy goes to you. Hope you find some place that appreciates your skills and abilities.

By the way, if you don't mind my asking how much did you use and what was the procedure? Did you mix agar and the gum then set it?
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
I used about 5 grams gellan for 500 g base (pear puree, sugar, pear juice reduction)
I also used about 7g cornstarch to give it a creamy texture. Though the gellan was the wrong type the initial mix chunky if that makes sense not so much mouth feel byt when you cut it, it broke but it was soft. Hard to explain.
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