When a solution containing calcium lactate is submerged into a sodium alginate bath, calcium ions react with alginate molecules by allowing them to align and bind so that a thin gel membrane encapsulates the solution. The gelification process that forms the membrane will stop the moment the sphere is rinsed, as its interior will be free of alginate molecules.
THE SOLUTION TO BE TRANSFORMED
Prepare about 1 cup of a solution to be spherified.
Toppings such as small pieces of fruit or aromatic herbs can be placed in the mold before freezing in order to remain encapsulated within the spheres.
The use of demineralized water is recommended, as tap water with a high calcium percentage could cause the sodium alginate bath to gelify.
Warning : Solutions with a high alcohol percentage cannot be frozen in a standard kitchen freezer, and neither can denser, thicker solutions such as honey-based or syrup-based solutions.
SERVING AND PRESERVATION
Store the spheres in their original solution for a maximum of 12 hours before serving.
To serve hot, let the spheres sit in hot water before serving.
Spheres can also be left to macerate in any other tasty solution to change the taste and color of their gel membrane.
Ensure that the spheres do not touch one another while in the bath as this can cause their membranes to stick together and eventually break.
Should the spheres’ membrane break when manipulated, let the spheres rest for a longer time in the alginate bath in order to allow the membrane to gradually thicken.