Saturday, June 1, 2013

China grass is another name for agar agar ..

China grass is another name for agar agar ..
Agar or agar-agar is a gelatinous substance derived by boiling.
Throughout history into modern times, agar has been chiefly used as an ingredient in desserts throughout Asia.
Agar (agar-agar) can be used as a laxative, a vegetarian gelatin substitute, a thickener for soups, in fruit preserves, ice cream, and other desserts, as a clarifying agent in brewing also.
The word "agar" comes from agar-agar, the Malay name for red algae from which the jelly is produced. It is also known as kanten, China grass, Japanese isinglass, Ceylon moss or Jaffna moss. Gracilaria lichenoides is specifically referred to as agal-agal or Ceylon agar.
Agar exhibits a melting at 85 °C | 185 °F and solidifying from 32-40 °C | 90-104 °F.
This property lends a suitable balance between easy melting and good gel stability at relatively high temperatures.
Agar-agar is a natural vegetable gelatin counterpart. White and semi-translucent, it is sold in packages as washed and dried strips or in powdered form. It can be used to make jellies, puddings, and custards. For making jelly, it is boiled in water until the solids dissolve. Sweetener, flavoring, coloring, fruit or vegetables are then added and the liquid is poured into molds to be served as desserts and vegetable aspics, or incorporated with other desserts, such as a jelly layer in a cake.
Agar-agar is approximately 80% fiber, so it can serve as an intestinal regulator.
One use of agar in Japanese cuisine is anmitsu, a dessert made of small cubes of agar jelly and served in a bowl with various fruits or other ingredients.

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