Agar-agar’s gelifying properties are activated when the solution is heated to a temperature of 194°f. The gelification process itself is then triggered when the solution cools down to temperatures ranging between 90°f and 110°f. The gel produced will be reversible, so it can be re-melted and re-shaped.
To create pearls, the solution containing agar-agar should be brought to a boil first and then dripped into a cold oil to trigger gelification. So long as the pearls can cool down before they sink to the bottom of the container of oil, they will be perfectly round.
THE SOLUTION TO BE TRANSFORMED
Prepare approximately 3⁄4 cup of a solution to be transformed into pearls. The acidity of the ingredients used will not impact the gelification process. however, the addition of sugar will strengthen the gel.
Warning : denser, thicker solutions such as honey-based or syrup-based solutions can be diluted in order to ensure that they contain enough water to hydrate the agar-agar.
SERVING AND PRESERVATION
Store the pearls in a closed container in the fridge for several days if needed. The pearls can also be left to macerate in the oil used in previous steps if the taste of the oil fits with that of the pearls.
Rinsing the pearls with water is optional.
If the taste of the oil used in previous steps fits with that of the pearls. The same oil could also be used to extend the pearls’ fridgelife.
To serve hot, warm up the pearls by submerging them in hot water.
Shapeless or flat pearls indicate that the oil was not cold enough at the time of dripping the preparation, or that the glass used wasn’t deep enought.