2 Chefs Test a Spherificator!

2 Chefs Test a Spherificator!

February 27, 2020 100 By William Morgan


(upbeat music) – [Ben] We are Sorted, a group of mates who have your back when it
comes to all things food. From cooking battles to gadget reviews. – Ben, it’s not worth it! (tray clatters) – [Ben] And cookbook challenges to a mid week Meal Packs app. – [Man] Crack your eggs, bake. – We uncover the tools that’ll help us all cook and eat smarter. Join our community where
everything we do starts with you. Hello, my name is Ben, this is Jamie and this is fridge cam. – Now, do you like showing
off at dinner parties? – If you do then you might
want this next gadget. – It’s called a (mumbles). – Spherificator! Two chefs testing one bit
of kit recommended by you, and today it’s this! A Spherificator. It allows you to turn virtually any liquid into caviar shaped pearls, that will produce up to
500 pearls per minute! (cash register chimes) It’s a great tool for
foodie, chefs, bartenders and anyone who loves to entertain. It comes with the tag line go
ahead, play with your food. And I think today is
gonna be a playground. It comes with a bunch of the chemicals so that you can create
endless possibilities. You guys suggested it, we
bought this with our own monies, and we have not spoken to these people so, (box slams) let’s have a play! – It would be interesting if it works, because, this is something that you only really get in professional kitchens. – [Ben] I see this today
as just a bit of fun and to play some games
because I don’t think, I don’t know, nobody is
really gonna use it are they? – Well, Ben as you well
know I’m all about fun, so shall we get started? (upbeat saxophone music) – Number one for my fancy dinner party, I’m thinking some nice smoked
salmon and sour cream blinis, and I want chive pearls. – How did I get dragged into
prepping your dinner party? – To make it, we’re gonna
blend chopped fresh chives, into a salty water solution. James, our sodium chloride
solution is ready. – It looks a lot like water. – With a pinch of salt (laughs). – Oh, damn it. – And then while it’s going round, drop in a mixture of
sugar and sodium alginate that have been combined. Strain it, leave it to rest! And then add it to your Spherificator. (bell dings) – [James] Wow this is
gonna be so fascinating. – So you stir, about a
teaspoon of calcium chloride into 500 mil of water, and
that becomes the calcium bath, that we’re gonna drop
all of our liquids into. – I haven’t even put
any balls in liquid yet and I still, I, already think
this is just not worth it. – ‘Cause this whole process was developed in like the 1940s wasn’t it? It was only much later,
that they applied it to food and molecular astronomy. – I don’t know, Ben. – Mixture rested. – [James] And now it just goes in here. – And then you, over here. – And then I, yep. – [Ben] Oh you’ve gone
it, you’ve put it all in. – [James] I want 500. (laughs) – In order to get the perfect balls, it has to be the right
height above the water. So that it falls. So the tip of the needle
should be six inches from the balls. (group laughs) Behave, that’s what it says, behave. If you want to know what
six inches is James, it’s about a banana, so from about six inches above the water, you drop it in. 500 pearls per minute, up to! This is the moment! – Does that look about right? – Hang on, let me get my banana out. You can go up a bit, there we go. – [James] Imagine if it just doesn’t work! – [Ben] I mean, it looks really awful. – I might actually get to 500. – You might actually get
to 500 but I don’t know if any of them are actually spherical. it’s almost like pond water James. I don’t think they’re supposed to float, because the instruction is
stir the water not the pearls. – Leave to set for one minute. (screams) Leave to set! – What’s wrong with you,
you’re just disappointed, that it hasn’t worked. You should have my mindset where
I’m happy it hasn’t worked. (laughs) – We might’ve ballsed this first one up. – That would be funny
if we’d made any balls. (laughs) We don’t have any balls. – I remember reading a comment, somewhere that said if you’re not careful, and you do it too low then you can end up with more like, sperm shape. And if it’s too high– – Well I didn’t get it wrong. We (bleep) measured it with a
banana, what are you on about? – No, no I’m not blaming
you I’m just saying, you end up with more
sperm shape, if it’s– – We measured it with a
banana, and you’re blaming me, for the fact that it doesn’t work. – If it’s higher above
the water you get discs, because as it hits the
water they flatten out so have we got any spheres? – [James] It’s kinda ball shaped. – [Ben] Great balls of fire! – [James] Does that look like the type of ball that you know and love? (laughs) They’re not balls though are they? You didn’t need to do that – They do pop, and they do taste of chive. (upbeat funky music) The start to my dinner
party, absolute baller, rocking out the smoked
salmon and chive blinis. Right, bottoms up. They look great, but with
the way we’ve plated them, it’s not making a huge difference. – I don’t know what’s happened chemically, because I have no idea what
were doing, but (laughs). I think what’s happened is that, they’re not popping, they’re
jelly all the way through. – A very subtle chive, but because we’ve blended
the chive into the water they’re not like, chive! They’re just like, chive. It looks intriguing and
if you were serving it on something else it is a nice, vegetarian, vegan alternative to caviar and a weird color
that shouldn’t be there. But on that the flavor
is not doing it for me. – Honestly you’re such a nice person. – Okay chive caviar, average start. Next up, balsamic bubbles. – [James] For the balsamic
pearls we’re gonna blend sodium citrate with water. That was fascinating. – [Ben] Changes color! – Then as it blends on a
low speed we’re gonna mix in sugar and sodium alginate, and then we slowly pour
in the balsamic vinegar as it mixes again, and then leave it to rest
for 30 to 45 minutes. – So the science here is that
once you’ve put the sodium alginate into a calcium chloride
solution, it forms a gel. It does that best at a
relatively neutral pH. If you’re trying to
(mumbles), make spheres, out of something more
acidic, like vinegar, you need to balance it
out with sodium citrate. – Are you gonna be able
to explain to me how it forms these things? Ben, I didn’t care that much. ♪ He’s a super geek, super geek ♪ ♪ He’s super geeky ♪ – Two molecules of sodium alginate, plus a water bath of calcium chloride gives you two molecules
of sodium chloride, which we don’t want, that’s salt, we’re not really gonna use that, but it will give you what you do want which is something here which is maths (grunts). C12 H14 012. No ’cause that’s where
the calcium bonds in, so it’s 14, calcium, zero, 12. That’s the bit that forms the gel. – I can’t wait for that
to go onto a YouTube video and for a quarter of a
million people to see it. – Does that make sense? (bell dings) – [Both] Ooh! – It’s not gonna work. To us the balsamic mixture
looked just too gelatinous, to fall with gravity
through our Spherificator, so we’ve done a few by hand, just to see if the mix is gonna work. It’s worked. So we’ll drain these off and
now we’ll try with the machine. Again, more like tadpoles. (upbeat music) – That is a talking point at the table. – We will do anything for a
talking point at the table, even if it’s questionable. Before we try these, what we actually did was create our own, and we created some with the device, and we put our own on the
plate, we backed ourselves. – They’re certainly bigger, we used like, a wider nozzle on a squeezy bottle, as opposed to the device
through a thin needle. – They look like they’re gonna burst – [Ben] On it’s own first. – [Both] Cheers. – More so than the chive. It’s still not a pop is it? – No it’s more like a jelly thingy. – What is nicer with these
is they have more flavor, because of the vinegar,
but it’s not like, acidic. It’s kind of already been mellowed out. – Okay so we’ve tried ours, were gonna try the ones that
came from the (mumbles). – Spherificator. – I can’t, I just can’t. – They’re bigger but they’re not better. – Neither of them are right are they? – No, on their own
they’re a pop of balsamic. – But they don’t taste of anything, like, if you put a drop of that
balsamic vinegar on a tomato or a mozzarella, you would taste sweet,
acidic, balsamic vinegar. And with that they just
disappear completely. – It has been diluted. – You can’t taste it. – I think we’ve got the
ball rolling though, I think we need to move on, I need a gin. Number three, I think
I need a gin and tonic, so let’s make cucumber pearls. One English cucumber, pealed, water and sodium citrate, in and blended. Then add cucumber, then
while it’s going round, add in our sugar, and
sodium alginate mixture. – [James] It’s looking smooth. – [Ben] It’s looking smooth. – [James] I wonder if we
shouldn’t have peeled it. Does it say peel? – It does say peeled. Oh maybe it doesn’t say peeled. It says pureed. I just read it from a distance. – Says pureed, wow. We cannot even do the most
simple, basic scientific stuff. We shouldn’t be allowed
to test this (bleep). – We shouldn’t be allowed to do anything. – We shouldn’t be allowed to test this. Why bother, honestly, like, why bother? – Shall we start again? – No, I can’t take it again. – Remind me to book an
optician’s appointment, when I get home. – I’m not sure it’s the
glasses that’s the problem. (upbeat rock music) – It’s definitely got kind
of mucus feel about it. Hasn’t it? Smells cucumbery. – [James] Let’s put it straight in. – [Ben] I’ve replaced our
bath and our draining water. – I don’t think I need a banana anymore. I think I can guess. – Are you getting good? We should have gone big or small nozzle? – [James] I’ve gone big. – Pretty spherical, still
not particularly big. Gut reaction. These are our best confetti
pearls bubbles yet. Application, I’m not sure I want that floating on the top of my drink. Taste-wise it’s fine, it’s cucumbery. And I don’t mind cucumber
in a gin and tonic. It’s just still not, I don’t want it as a drinking experience. – They’re so close to popping though. – Best ones yet and shape wise. – I would rate, best ones yet. – Okay I think we need to go sweet. Number four. Blood orange beads, on our cheesecake. (upbeat jazz music) So far we’ve tried the
chive, the balsamic vinegar and the cucumber, they have all been recipes
from the little booklet. Now we’re going off pieced,
with blood orange juice. – They’ve all been so easy
and worked so well but, why not just try something
that’s not in the book? – So we’re gonna try
and calculate something, that’s roughly the right amount
of all of our ingredients. Based on logic to get something that sets. – Imagine if this works so well? – [Ben] 250 mil of that. – [James] Done. – [Ben] Three quarters of a
teaspoon of sodium citrate. – [James] There must be
a way to keep the color. – You lose all the color as soon as the sodium citrate goes in. It has to go in because the pH is too low for the reaction to work. And then we’ll stick to the same ratio of sodium alginate and
sugar as before, blend it, strain it, rest it. Then we add it to our device. James I’m up 50, 50 here. Device and handheld. – Well we can do 50, 50. Let’s go wild, Ben. – This is not something you
just knock up mid-week is it? And I think even if you’re doing it for your dinner parties at the weekend, or as a bartender, you’re doing it to impress,
to go the extra mile, for the wow factor, for the experience and the talking point. I wonder if molecular
astronomy , we’re past that, were back to basics now with food. Less is more on a plate. – Yeah less is more,
nature, back to nature. Ready? (device whirls) – You got a little
something trapped in yours? – Yeah, think I do. (upbeat jazz music) – No you’re right James, It’s definitely not 500 a minute. But I’m still having a ball. These are my first
balls that have dropped. – We’ve come to the forth recipe, we’ve tried to put our balls
through this and it’s busted. (device whirls) – [Ben] Oh, it’s working again James. – [Man] It’s working, quick! – [Ben] Look at those, I’m
pretty chuffed with those. – It’s actually more
satisfying to do it yourself. – Oh no! What’s going on there? We had a go with the blood orange. We’ve ended up with the same batch which has rested for
the same amount of time, through our 90 pound machine, we get that. By hand we get that. Our version is much more spherical. Definitely not 500 a minute,
but who needs 500 balls? (upbeat guitar music) Number four, I think it looks the most like it’s supposed to look. – Yeah it’s still the color
is still not quite there. – [Ben] It’s not as
vibrant as I was hoping. – Try it. I think they are the best. – They’re citrusy, they’re
orange, they’re fragrant. They’re not like, zingy
hit you in the face. They’re still quite diluted, but they are the best in
terms of the mouth feel. it’s a nice little touch,
to round off a desert. And I think it looks better
on a desert than perhaps, on a salad, and certainly
better than floating in a drink. – If you try them on their own, they taste citrusy and blood orangy. As soon as you put a cheesecake with it, you can’t taste it anymore. So are they necessary? Would a blood orange syrup be much nicer? Would a segment of blood
orange be much nicer? – Yes. – Okay wow! – I think this is style over substance. – That was easy. – But I like the fact that
it encourages us to play. I’m not convinced that
I would recommend anyone go and buy a Spherificator, but. It has encouraged us to play
and think about plating, and that’s a positive thing,
I just think perhaps today, was a slight curve ball. – Made us think a lot about flavor, and color and texture. More so than we usually do. Which I quite liked. – Go ahead, play with your food. – Well I think it’s fair to say that, that was quite an honest
review of the (mumbles). – Spherificator. – Spherificator. If you want more kitchen
gadget reviews like this, send us examples of weird
ones that we can’t pronounce, and we’ll try and review
them, and pronounce them. – Otherwise, we will
see you every Wednesday, every Sunday back in this very fridge. Until then! Spherificator! We’ve also built the Sorted Club, where you can get tons of foodie inspo using the Packs Mid-Week Meal app. Discover and share
restaurant recommendations, using the Eat app. Listen and contribute to
our Feast your Ears podcast and send us ideas for new cookbooks you’ll receive throughout the year. Check it all out by
heading to sorted.club. (upbeat music) And now a blooper. ♪ He’s a very geeky chef ♪ ♪ Who’d get on well
with your grandmother ♪ ♪ Memorizing all his magic tricks ♪ ♪ Because his mind is photographic ♪ ♪ He’s a very cheeky Ebbers ♪ ♪ But knowledge isn’t always power ♪ ♪ ‘Cause although he aces all his tests ♪ ♪ He scores an F for fashion sense ♪ ♪ He’s a super geek, super geek ♪ ♪ He’s super geeky ♪ ♪ He’s a super geek, super geek ♪ ♪ He’s super geeky ♪