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What is Kappa Carrageenan?
Kappa is one of the three Carrageenans extracted from red seaweed extract taken specifically from Kappaphycus alvarezii. It has been used to make a traditional Irish pudding for centuries and is now being used by some of the world’s top chefs as an alternative to traditional gelling agents such as gelatine and pectin. It is vegetarian and vegan friendly.
What Does Kappa Carrageenan Do?
Kappa Carrageenan creates a firm gel with a brittle texture that is suitable for both hot and cold preparations. Kappa Carrageenan like Iota forms a thermoreversible gel (a gel that can be remelted after setting, usually by heating about 10 degrees above the gelling temperature). It is important to note that Kappa pruduces strong and brittle gels in the presence of potassium. It can also form very creamy textures when used in conjuction with dairy products (milk, cream) in concentrations as low as .15%.
Why Use Kappa Carrageenan In Molecular Gastronomy?
Carrageenan can form multiple gels in a wide range of textures, from very soft to very firm, and from elastic to brittle. These gels can then be served hot or cold. You can create gel sheets, sorbets and many modern cuisine affects with this ingredient.