What is agar-agar, what is it for and how to do it

Agar-agar is a natural gelling agent from red algae that can be used to give more consistency to desserts, such as ice cream, pudding, flan, yogurt, brown icing and jelly, but it can also be used simply to make vegetable jelly, less industrialized and therefore healthier.

The agar-agar is sold in powder or in the form of strips of dried seaweed, and must be used in hot water so that it dissolves completely, then it must be refrigerated, where it will solidify into the desired shape. Another way to find agar-agar is in capsules that can be used to lose weight, because it triples its volume inside the stomach, reducing hunger, and is a great source of fibers that work with a laxative effect, releasing the intestine.

What is agar-agar for

Agar-agar is used to:

  • Produce homemade gelatin, using fruit juice, for example;
  • Increase the consistency of cold desserts by simply adding powdered agar-agar to the recipe;
  • Help to lose weight by controlling hunger, increasing satiety, and decreasing the consumption of other foods;
  • Control blood glucose, by delaying sugar spikes;
  • Decrease the absorption of fat and cholesterol;
  • Clean the intestine, as it acts as a natural laxative increasing the volume and hydration of the fecal cake, regenerating the intestinal walls.

Agar-agar is a thickener and natural gel, without calories, which has a yellowish-white color and has no flavor. It has, in its composition, mainly fibers
and mineral salts such as phosphorus, iron, potassium, chlorine, iodine, cellulose and a small amount of protein.

How to use agar-agar

Agar-agar is entirely of vegetable origin and has a gelling power up to 20 times greater than unflavored gelatin, which is why it should be used in a lesser amount in recipes. It can be used as follows:

In the recipes, as a gelling agent: You can add 1 teaspoon or soup of agar-agar in the preparation of the porridge or in the cream of the desserts. Agar does not dissolve in the cold temperature, so it should be used when the cream is on fire, at a temperature above 90 degrees, being necessary to mix with a spoon, stirring until it completely dissolves.

To make vegetable gelatine: Add 2 tablespoons of agar-agar in 1 glass of freshly squeezed orange juice or whole grape juice. Bring to the fire so that it can completely dissolve, if necessary it can sweeten to taste. Place in molds and refrigerate for about 1 hour, until solid.

In capsules, as a laxative or slimming: Take 1 agar-agar capsule (0.5 to 1 g) 30 minutes before lunch, and another before dinner, together with 2 glasses of water.

Attention: In high doses it can cause diarrhea, and its use is not recommended in case of intestinal obstruction.