How's That Abstinence Plan Working Out, Then?

Surprise! Not very well!

currently playing: Longpigs – She Said

Shorter Delia:

It’s Bodger & Badger’s Dream Show!

Frickell From The Past

Ah, Internet Memories.

currently playing: Sly & The Family Stone – Soul Clappin’ II

Even The Twitters Are Getting Sarcastic!

In Columbus,MS & wondering how somebody who's in second place is offering the vice presidency to the person who's in first place. Vote Tues!

Barack Obama’s twitter feed.

currently playing: Major Lance – It Must Be Love Coming Down

Meanwhile, Back In Communist Russia...

Or: ace things you find buried on a hard drive at 1am…

currently playing: Meanwhile Back In Communist Russia – Realization

A Day Late.

But it’s twenty-five years since this:


And nothing was the same again. Especially Factory’s bank balance.

currently playing: New Order – Blue Monday

Tucker Carlson: Dolt For Hire

CARLSON: Right. But I mean, since journalistic standards in Great Britain are so much dramatically lower than they are here, it's a little much being lectured on journalistic ethics by a reporter from the "Scotsman," but I wonder if you could just explain what you think the effect is on the relationship between the press and the powerful. People don't talk to you when you go out of your way to hurt them as you did in this piece.

Ah, the American Fourth Estate.

currently playing: Dexy’s Midnight Runners – Show Me

FOODSCIENCE: Agar Agar Agar Agar Agar!

We all remember agar, yes? Using it in petri dishes for growing bacteria? What you may not know is that you can use agar for other things. Edible things. It turns out that it can take the place of gelatin in many recipes, especially jellies. Which is quite handy if you’re a vegetarian, unless you like marshmallows, as it doesn’t quite work in the same manner. Today’s FOODSCIENCE! is all about agar!

The first experiment of the day was to try and recreate the chocolate jelly seen oh-so-briefly on Masterchef a few weeks ago. Nothing special here: melt 100g of chocolate with 300ml of water, mix in some agar and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and pour into a mould. Leave in the fridge for two hours, and you get this:

Chocolate Jelly!

It looks much better than it tastes, sadly. I’m guessing that it might have turned out more like it looked on television if I used dark chocolate and a little more agar to make it firmer.

That was just the prelude, though. The real reason that I got the agar was spaghetti. Yes, spaghetti.

The Equipment

It’s quite simple. You first make an agar solution in the normal way (I used orange juice and strawberries in two separate batches) and pour it into a squeezy bottle. Then you squeeze the mixture into a series of coiled PVC tubes, placing each one in a bowl of iced water to help the solution set faster.

Setting the agar

Now comes the magic! The trusty iSi whipper comes in handy yet again. Charge up the whipper with a canister as usual, and place the tube on the nozzle. Press down, CAREFULLY!, and a noodle of spaghetti will shoot right out. Repeat with the other tubes, then fill them up again for another set of noodles!

I learnt a few things. Firstly, when they say CAREFULLY, they really mean it. Press down too hard on the whipper and you’ll send the noodle shooting across the kitchen. Secondly, fruit purees are far too thick to be inserted into the tubes. After two unsuccessful attempts, I watered down the strawberry puree with orange juice and managed to get a couple of noodles from the remaining mixture. I’m thinking that the best idea is to use the gelatine filtration method to produce a consommé first, and then mix the agar into that. If I have time, I may try that before I go to America (the process takes a few days to work).

Still, they do look pretty, don’t they?


currently playing: The Long Blondes – Nostalgia


At The Club :: Get In

Somebody To Drive You Home :: Couples

Texas, Ohio

You broke my heart, Texas You broke my heart.

currently playing: Orange Juice – Tender Object