• Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

  • product-image-quickten.png.a40203b506711f7664fc62024e54a584.pngDid you know that these all-volunteer forums are operated by the 501(c)3 not-for-profit Society for Culinary Arts & Letters? This holiday season, consider a tax-deductible Quick Ten Bucks to support the eG Forums and help us remain completely advertising-free. Thanks to all those who have donated so far!

Baselerd

Pliable Ganache/Flexible Curd Generic Recipe?

7 posts in this topic

On the subject of modern plated desserts: I have noticed a recent trend that has caught my attention - the flexible/pliable ganache (sometimes called the flexicurd). Now, I have made a few recipes for these types of desserts, which have turned out well (Specifically the Alinea Cookbook chocolate pliable ganache). Another recipe can be seen here on page 68. (ingredients listed below)

375 g chocolate

1 sheet gelatin

50 g water

100 g sorbitol

3 g agar

50 g glucose

900 g heavy cream

2 g salt

Now, my question is this: does anyone know of a good way to modify this recipe (or of any others) to accommodate other flavors? I have seen some very interesting pliable ganaches, such as yogurt, beet, grapefruit, coconut, etc. However, there doesn't seem an obvious way to modify these recipes. For a lot of dessert components this is as simple as changing a fruit puree to another flavored liquid. I am not so confident in this due to the fact that the recipes contain a lot of chocolate, which contributes significant textural properties. To further complicate this, I know some hydrocolloids are sensitive to pH (pectin) or ion concentrations (LA gellan, carrageenan). Anyone have experience with this?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not really as simple as that unfortunately. The variations generally require more modification that just switching the flavor components depending what you're working with and the result you're after. For example, Johnny Iuzzini's Meyer Lemon Flexi-curd and Caramel Flexi-curd both both use almost identical ingredients as far as the hydrocolloids are concerned (the only difference being the lemon uses iota carrageenan and the caramel uses kappa) but the amounts of each ingredient are different for a pretty close to same-size batch. I once tried doing a variation on the Alinea flexi-ganache by replacing the chocolate with cocoa butter so that any chocolate note would take a way-in-the-back seat to the other flavors involved. I basically followed the recipe exactly wth that one switch and flavored the cream by infusing it with mint. I did get a flexible result that tasted purely of mint but it required some tweaking of the cocoa butter amount and still wasn't the same texture as the original. It would bend but it wouldn't actually twist and loop without cracking or breaking. The recipe you posted is the one from the Alinea book and I still maintain that it's incorrect though I've seen no official correction for it. The amount of cream is way too high in that recipe and the result is very soft and difficult to work with. Adjusting the cream down to equal the weight of the chocolate or even a bit less works much better as far as shaping goes.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd try to get a formula that works with white chocolate and then use oil-based flavor extracts to flavor it various ways. Sorry, I don't have a white chocolate formula myself. But, I have made a lot of white chocolate truffle fillings this way. Amoretti makes a ton of flavors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you just want to make bendy shapes, something as simple as a gelatin/agar combo in most curd recipes will do the trick. If it's too brittle when cold, letting it warm just a bit usually solves the problem. If you're wanting to do loops and twists and all that, it usually takes some playing around when you change components. Doing the Alinea ganache with white or milk chocolate still works, I just go a bit lower on the cream. Eliminating any form of chocolate from the formula is when the fun begins as far as figuring out what to do to make it work. The hydrocolloid bill in the Iuzzin flexi-curds is fairly substantial (carrageenan, gellan, agar and LM pectin) but it's easier to manipulate flavor-wise because it doesn't rely on chocolate as a structural component. It can be gently twisted, curved, carefully knotted, folded... but it won't support itself enough for loops and larger arches. I went through an excited phase of playing around with this stuff soon after seeing the Alinea version several years ago but I haven't messed with it much in the past few years. I'm hoping somebody that's been working with this technique more regularly and recently chimes in to gve you some more specific information.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool, thanks for the input. It doesn't sounds like there is an easy way to go about this other than trial by fire.

That recipe from Iuzzini looks pretty good for a starting point actually - maybe I'll start there. Also, looking through the MC Volume 4, they do have a "Best Bets for Cold Gels" table, which should work with any liquid base - the real question is do any of their combinations give the same creamy but firm texture and elasticity of the fabled flexi-curd...


Edited by Baselerd (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can those pliable ganaches be frozen and still maintain their texture and flexibility? Has anyone tried it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, any thoughts on how to replace cream by cocnut cream?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Similar Content

    • By eG Forums Host
      Introduction

      Welcome to the index for the Sous Vide: Recipes, Techniques, & Equipment topic, one of the largest and most influential topics on eG Forums. (The topic has been closed to keep the index stable and reliable; you can find another general SV discussion topic here.) This index is intended to help you navigate the thousands of posts and discussions to make this rich resource more useful and accessible.

      In order to understand sous vide cooking, it's best to clear up some misconceptions and explain some basics. Sous vide cooking involves vacuum-sealing food in a plastic bag and cooking it in a water bath at precise temperatures. Though it translates literally as "under vacuum," "Sous vide" is often taken to mean "under pressure," which is a misnomer; not all SV cooking involves food cooked in conditions that exceed atmospheric pressure. (See below.) In addition, calculations for SV cooking involve not only time and temperature but also thickness. Finally, due to the anaerobic conditions inside the bag and the low temperatures used, food safety issues are paramount.

      You can read the basics of SV cooking and equipment here. In the summer of 2005, Nathan Myhrvold (Society member nathanm) posted this informative, "I'm now going to answer my own initial questions" post, which addresses just about everything up to that point. For what came next, read on -- and be sure to order Nathan Myhrvold's highly anticipated Modernist Cuisine book, due in spring 2011.

      As with all indexes of on-going discussions, this one has limitations. We've done our best to create a user-friendly taxonomy emphasizing the categories that have come up repeatedly. In addition, the science, technology, and recipes changed over time, and opinions varied greatly, so be sure to read updated information whenever possible.

      Therefore, we strongly encourage you to keep these issues in mind when reading the topic, and particularly when considering controversial topics related to food safety, doneness, delta T cooking, and so on. Don't read a first post's definitive claim without reading down the topic, where you'll likely find discussion, if not heated debate or refutation, of that claim. Links go to the first post in a series that may be discontinuous, so be sure to scan a bit more to get the full discussion.

      Recipes were chosen based solely on having a clear set of information, not on merit. Indeed, we've included several stated failures for reference. Where possible, recipes include temperature and time in the link label -- but remember that thickness is also a crucial variable in many SV preparations. (See below for more information on thickness.)

      History, Philosophy & Value of SV/LTLT Cooking

      Over the years, we've talked quite a bit about SV as a concept, starting with this discussion about how SV cooking got started. There have also been several people who asked, Why bother with SV in the first place? (See also this discussion.) What with all the electronics and plastic bags, we asked: Does SV food lack passion? Finally, there have been several discussions about the value of SV cooking in other eG Forums topics, such as the future of SV cooking, No More Sous Vide -- PLEASE!, is SV "real cooking," and what's the appeal of SV?

      Those who embrace SV initially seek ideas about the best applications for their new equipment. Discussions have focused on what a first SV meal should be -- see also this discussion -- and on the items for which SV/LTLT cooking is best suited. There's much more along those lines here, here, and here.

      Vacuums and Pressure in Sous Vide Cooking

      As mentioned above, there has been great confusion about vacuums, pressure, and their role SV cooking. Here is a selection of discussion points on the subject, arranged chronologically; please note that later posts in a given discussion may refute earlier ones:

      Do you need a vacuum for SV cooking, and, if so, why? What exactly is a "vacuum"? Click here, here, and ff. Are items in vacuum-sealed bags "under pressure"? Does a vacuum sealer create a vacuum inside the bag? Do you really need a vacuum, or can you use ZipLoc bags? Also see here, here, and here. If "sous vide" means "under pressure," aren't the items in the bag under pressure? There is more along these lines to be found in this discussion.  

      The Charts

      We've collected the most important of many charts in the SV topic here. Standing above the rest are Nathan Myhrvold's charts for cooking time versus thickness and desired core temperature. We worked with him to create these three reformatted protein tables, for beef, fish, and chicken & pork.

      Nathan provides additional information on his charts here. Information on how to read these charts can be found in this post. For an explanation of "rest time" in Nathan's tables, click here.

      Other Society members helped out as well. Douglas Baldwin references his heating time table for different geometric factors (slab/cylinder/sphere) here; the pdf itself can be found here. pounce created a post with all three tables as neatly formatted images. derekslager created two monospace font charts of Nathan's meat table and his fish table.

      Camano Chef created a cumulative chart with information gathered from other sources including Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc. Douglas Baldwin shared this chart devoted to pasteurizing poultry. PedroG detailed heat loss and steady state energy consumption of sous vide cookers in these charts.

      Finally, there is also an eG Forums topic on cooling rates that may be of interest.

      Acknowledgment & Comments

      This index was built by Chris Amirault, Director, eG Forums. It was reviewed by the eGullet Society volunteer team as well as many Society members. Please send questions or comments to Chris via messenger or email.
       
       
    • By TdeV
      Wikipedia defines pork wings as: a pork product made from the fibula of a pig's shank - a single bone surrounded by lean, tender meat.
      Images from the internet look like a finger-size bit of meat around a bone.
      Mine, however, look more like the meat (lots) which surrounds a bone. My butcher called this cut pork wings.
      You can see on the right that there's a small amount of bone.
         
       
      My butcher said he regularly ate SEVERAL of these. But this one measures 15 oz (425g).
      He also said it had to be cooked slowly.
       
      So, if I cook these sous vide, what temp and for how long?
    • By jedovaty
      Good morning!
       
      Long story short: I am doing a spin off the coconut/chocolate/almond candy (almond joy), and trying to create a specific shape out of the almond.  My hands are cramped after a couple dozen failed attempts whittling roasted almonds, so now I'd like to try a different approach, and instead, create some kind of sub-candy or cookie with roasted almonds that I can put into a mold or use a mini cookie cutter.  I'm fairly new to sweets, my knowledge in this area is pretty slim.  Some ideas so far, I don't like any, but it might help turn some gears:
      1. dusting almond over a stencil, but that's not enough almond nor crunchy enough
      2. almond brittle, but that's too hard and sweet, I'd like it more of a soft crunch, and bringing the almond flavor forward
      3. meringue with almonds (sort of macaron-ish), however, weather has been humid and raining here, and I'm ending up with a gooey mess instead of that soft crunch
       
      In addition to having almond-forward taste and soft crunch texture, it'd be fun to explore something modernish - I have a accumulated a few tools and ingredients not customarily found in homes.
       
      There are dietary considerations I will have to account for, however, no need to worry about that now, I am just looking for ideas and a place to take it from there
       
      Thank you for your time in reading!
    • By ChristysConfections
      Hey there wise E-gullet-ers!
       
      I have another question to put out there. I am interested in making a rose jelly - one that I can layer with a chocolate ganache similar to a pâte de fruit. I don't really know how to go about this. Do you infuse water with dried rose petals and make a syrup? What's the best way to gellify it? I'm very curious. Has anyone made jellies with any other botanicals? Is anyone willing to share their recipe as a guideline?
       
      Many thanks!
      Christy
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.