I really dislike tomatoes. Except in salsas, sauces and anything cooked. And if they’re fresh, it really takes a LOT of other stuff added to them to make me enjoy choking them down. Except for caprese salad. Something about the creaminess of the fresh mozzarella, the tangy sweet balsamic and the crisp basil…ugh…I literally drool for fresh tomatoes. A year or so ago my sister sent me some packets of agar-agar from Molecule-R that she had purchased online. Agar-agar is a natural gelling agent found in algae which allows you to perform some really awesome magic tricks….er or…molecular gastronomy. It sounds so fancy. Scratch fancy…molecular gastronomy is…elegant. Jim Gaffigan fans anyone?
Using said molecular gastronomy and my magic unicorn dust I made balsamic vinegar caviar with just 3 ingredients and a syringe. You boil the balsamic and agar-agar together and then using the syringe drop tiny droplets into a jar of ice cold olive oil. By the time the drops hit the bottom they have gelified. New word. Coined it now. They take such a fresh and yummy treat and crank up the wow factor. I just served these at my best friend’s baby shower using the balsamic caviar, fresh mozzarella pearls, basil and mini heirloom tomatoes that made the 8 hour trek back from Trader Joe’s. Oh yum. I am so in love with these. The caviar has also held up really well in the fridge. I made them over a week ago and the leftovers are still holding strong.
Note: Even though the term “caviar” is tossed around loosely in my post, mark my words; there has never and will never be ANYTHING that has lived in the water at any point in it’s life served in my kitchen.