Bill Cosby Ain’t Got Nothin on My Jell-O!
My first creation was with Campari and Guar Gum. Guar Gum is used in pastry cooking a lot to solidify gels and jams so I thought why not try it with liquor too and see what happens? The result turned out really nice, I must say. I used a sheet pan and a pastry sleeve to make little Campari gelly balls. Once everything was on the pan, I put it all in the freezer and let it sit. After about an hour they molded up pretty well and they taste like Campari candy. I’d like to try to get these a little bit harder so they could suspend in a cocktail or possibly be used as a garnish. It’s just going to take a little more playtime to figure it out.
The other method was by using gelatin and Campari to make a harder mold than the above experiment. I combined Campari and Vegetable Gelatin in a container and it solidified just like I wanted too. I noticed this gelatin hardened a lot faster than plain “Jell-O” gelatin. I’m going to use some Tovolo silicone molds later this week to see how they’ll set and work in a cocktail. The gelatin can definitely work for a garnish, but I still want to go further and try one last compound.
I have some methyl cellulose on order which will hopefully let me achieve alcoholic ice cubes. From what I read, cellulose will harden as it warms ups, BUT as it starts to cool, it will melt. What I’m thinking, is to heat up cellulose and Campari together (without burning off the alcohol) and pour it into Tovolo molds to freeze. If everything works out, the cubes will melt in a cocktail and slowly impart flavors into the drink. Think of making a Negroni with gin and sweet vermouth, but with a Campari cube that slowly dissolves as it cools down. Hopefully the cellulose will be here by the end of the week and then I can post some more info and my trials.