3 x 50ml Syringes
Most people only really think of syringes as something they see in a medical setting, but they are becoming increasingly popular in kitchens around the world. Chefs are beginning to appreciate the benefits of being able to dispense sauces and fillings with surgical accuracy, and they can also be used for a variety of specialist techniques.
Using 50ml syringes in cooking
A syringe can be used in the kitchen in the same way that it’s used in medicine and many cooks use them to inject marinades into meat to get a truly deep flavour, particularly in thick cuts. While some chefs keep their recipes a closely guarded secret, most marinades combine various combinations of herbs and spices, chillies, and garlic. Some recipes call for the marinating process to be started long before cooking the meat, but you can get away with a shorter marinating time if you are able to inject the flavour directly into the meat.
Filling a syringe with melted chocolate is a surefire way to brighten up a dish – you can inject it into strawberries or bananas, use it to decorate biscuits or pastries or just squeeze it onto a baking sheet to make your own chocolate drops.
You can also use them in this way to inject jam or custard into doughnuts or squirt crème patisserie into profiteroles and if you fancy something savoury, you can fill them with cheese sauce and inject it into a burger.
Using 50ml syringes in molecular gastronomy
These 50ml syringes are a popular choice among chefs who like to create eyecatching and tasty dishes using a scientific approach to mixing ingredients. Syringes are particularly useful when perfecting techniques such as spherification and reverse spherification to make gel beads of intense flavour. They look incredible and can be mixed with drinks, served as a garnish or used as a special ingredient.
The process relies on an understanding of the chemical interactions between various ingredients. Both types of spherification rely on the fact that sodium alginate forms an instant gel when exposed to calcium. This means that you can mix it with fruit juices, syrups or purees and then drop tiny amounts into a weak calcium solution to form jelly balls. This process can be performed the other way round as well and drops of calcium-rich mixtures can be dripped into a bath of sodium alginate.
Syringes are particularly useful in these processes as they allow you to have complete control over the size of the droplets that you jellify. You can create daintier jelly pearls or caviar much more quickly and consistently than you can with a syringe than you can when using a spoon.
You can also use syringes to make molecular spaghetti by adding some agar agar to your chosen sauce or mixture and heating it up to form a liquid gel which can be loaded into the syringe and then squirted through a tube submerged in ice water. The mixture solidifies as it cools and then you re-attach the empty syringe to blow the finished spaghetti onto the plate.
This technique can be used with anything from tomato soup, for a starter with a texturised surprise, to fruit juices, creating a dessert with a difference. If you can make it into a liquid, you can make it into spaghetti using this simple but hugely effective technique.
From adding a simple sauce to a range of delicious dishes to creating innovative gels and caviars, these 50ml syringes have such a wide range of uses in the kitchen, you’ll be wondering how you lived without them.