Low Carb Friends

Low Carb Friends (http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/)
-   Low Carb Recipe Help & Suggestions (http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/low-carb-recipe-help-suggestions/)
-   -   As God is my witness, my guar gum will never lump again! (http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/bbs/low-carb-recipe-help-suggestions/680059-god-my-witness-my-guar-gum-will-never-lump-again.html)

ravenrose 06-21-2010 05:51 PM

As God is my witness, my guar gum will never lump again!
 
Thanks to Madam De Leon again for suggesting this. I want to make sure you all see it. It's brilliant.

You know how you have different techniques for thickening with flour or cornstarch? Well guar or xanthan gum have their own technique. You can do the "shake it in slowly with a saltshaker" or something like that, but you always risk lumps. This WORKS.

Mix the guar or xanthan with OIL and then stir it into the hot mixture that needs thickening. It doesn't need to be very much oil, probably about 50/50. Just make sure it's all "dissolved" in the oil. (I put that in quotes, because it doesn't really dissolve, it's held in suspension. But you shouldn't see lumps of gum in the oil.)

If the mixture is hot and I stir it right in, I've never had a whisper of a lump.

This is so liberating. Compare the price of Guar Gum and Xanthan Gum to the proprietary thickening products. Xanthan is more expensive, but it only takes about 1/4 teaspoon of xanthan to thicken as much as maybe a half tablespoon of guar. Xanthan is also better in cold applications, in my experience. Guar needs to be heated to release its full thickening potential.

I also suggest that these gums, though a miracle of low carb thickening, somehow leave things tasting a bit flat. I usually add an extra shake or two of salt and a TINY bit of vinegar to things thickened with guar or xanthan to counteract that flatness.

I haven't tried the oil technique with my glucomannan powder, but I see no reason to think it would behave differently. Of course the main advantage of glucomannan is that it doesn't lump so much, so I think I will go with guar and xanthan in the future.

vonnygirl 06-21-2010 07:01 PM

Wow! Thank you, I wish I would have read this before I made dinner, I needed to thicken a white sauce for a pot pie and had a terrible time with the guar gum! You say Xanthan is better?

Speck333 06-22-2010 12:28 AM

wow! Awesome idea! I haven't used my guar gum in forever because of the lumps and, like you said, the odd flavor when you have to use too much. I think I'm going to make some sausage gravy for eggs soon. I miss that stuff...

CreekWatcher 06-22-2010 08:41 AM

That's a great idea; maybe we could just keep a suspended mixture by the stove to use at any time.

With regard to the "flat" taste that gums can give to food, my theory is that while the smoothness that their use can give is desirable in a lot of foods up to a point--if your stuff becomes too smooth (even short of becoming gloppy), the food will start to slip over your taste buds, instead of "locking in" with them. How's that for half baked?

ravenrose 06-22-2010 05:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CreekWatcher (Post 13617883)
That's a great idea; maybe we could just keep a suspended mixture by the stove to use at any time.

With regard to the "flat" taste that gums can give to food, my theory is that while the smoothness that their use can give is desirable in a lot of foods up to a point--if your stuff becomes too smooth (even short of becoming gloppy), the food will start to slip over your taste buds, instead of "locking in" with them. How's that for half baked?

interesting

Speck333 06-22-2010 08:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ravenrose (Post 13619766)
interesting

very

SugarPop 06-23-2010 01:24 AM

Wow- thanks ravenrose.........I'm copy/pasting your entire post and putting it in my recipe file.

I have all of the gums and powders you've mentioned, but have been fearful until now.
B

Jennifer Eloff 06-23-2010 08:30 AM

Ravenrose, that is a breakthrough method. Thanks! :) Lately, I've been taking to putting some of the liquid and my Thickening Agent in the blender, blending - then add to the sauce, soup or stew; no lumps either!

Your method doesn't dirty the blender, so that's a big plus.

LindaSue 06-23-2010 08:55 AM

I haven't had a chance yet to try cooking with xanthan gum using your method, ravenrose. However, I just took about a 1/4 teaspoon of xanthan gum and mixed in 1/4 teaspoon of oil and it was amazing how it just sort of melted into the oil. I think you're a genius to come up with this, ravenrose. I wonder why no one else has ever come up with this idea in all these years??? I'm thinking that this method will be great for making gravy if you just blend the xanthan gum with the meat drippings and then add liquid instead of trying to whisk in the xanthan gum later.

Jennifer Eloff 06-23-2010 10:02 AM

Linda, I actually noticed that when the liquid I was adding my Thickening Agent (basically a mixture of guar gum, xanthan gum and a tiny amount of cornstarch) to had significant fat in it - no lumps formed even if I sprinkled it on and didn't blend it first. I didn't put two and two together though. I'll try this new method of Ravenrose's one of these days soon. Brilliant! :shake:

Jennifer Eloff 06-23-2010 10:05 AM

Oops, I posted something here that was meant to go elsewhere.

ravenrose 06-24-2010 11:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LindaSue (Post 13621467)
I'm thinking that this method will be great for making gravy if you just blend the xanthan gum with the meat drippings and then add liquid instead of trying to whisk in the xanthan gum later.

Possibly, but I'm not sure why you would want to. The mixture of oil and gum doesn't need to be cooked to remove the raw taste like flour does with this technique. Try it both ways, but I really think you will prefer adding it later in the process. Tell us!

ravenrose 06-24-2010 11:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CreekWatcher (Post 13617883)
That's a great idea; maybe we could just keep a suspended mixture by the stove to use at any time.

Later it came to me why this is probably not the best plan--it would be really hard to tell how much of the gum you are using, because it just sinks to the bottom. I think it's better to measure the gum first, if you are the type to follow recipes. If you cook by look and taste, go ahead and try your idea. Just add bits of the oil/gum mixture till it's thickened to taste.

24Fan 06-25-2010 05:27 AM

Raven, your title of this post made me laugh out loud :rofl:

Great idea, thanks for sharing!

LindaSue 06-25-2010 08:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ravenrose (Post 13627619)
Possibly, but I'm not sure why you would want to. The mixture of oil and gum doesn't need to be cooked to remove the raw taste like flour does with this technique. Try it both ways, but I really think you will prefer adding it later in the process. Tell us!

Because once you add water to the meat drippings to make gravy, you might end up with clumped up xanthan gum if you sprinkle it in dry the usual way. If you blend the xanthan gum with the fat drippings first, you'd avoid that. The trick would be guessing how much xanthan gum to use. Another idea would to set aside a tiny bit of the grease/drippings just for mixing with the xanthan gum to add later to thicken the gravy. Of course plain oil would also work and it's such a tiny amount that it wouldn't affect the flavor of the gravy anyway.

Ginaaaaaa 06-25-2010 09:28 AM

When I make gravy I usually put equal amounts of the fat from the drippings and flour, then whisk until the flour turns golden brown then add in the reserved drippings and stock and simmer until thick. When using the guar gum you would mix it with some of the fat from the pan drippings, mix the drippings and stock together in the pan then add the guar/fat mixture and simmer until thick right?

CreekWatcher 06-25-2010 10:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ravenrose (Post 13627620)
Later it came to me why this is probably not the best plan--it would be really hard to tell how much of the gum you are using, because it just sinks to the bottom. I think it's better to measure the gum first, if you are the type to follow recipes. If you cook by look and taste, go ahead and try your idea. Just add bits of the oil/gum mixture till it's thickened to taste.

Yes I think you're right.

ravenrose 06-25-2010 11:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LindaSue (Post 13628428)
Because once you add water to the meat drippings to make gravy, you might end up with clumped up xanthan gum if you sprinkle it in dry the usual way. If you blend the xanthan gum with the fat drippings first, you'd avoid that. The trick would be guessing how much xanthan gum to use. Another idea would to set aside a tiny bit of the grease/drippings just for mixing with the xanthan gum to add later to thicken the gravy. Of course plain oil would also work and it's such a tiny amount that it wouldn't affect the flavor of the gravy anyway.

Got it. That's actually what I was thinking, to use a bit of oil in addition to the fat already in the gravy. The gum is SO sensitive to any moisture at all, I wouldn't try to use the drippings, or even melted butter, come to think of it. Olive oil or canola, perhaps coconut oil. It really is a tiny amount.

ravenrose 06-25-2010 11:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ginaaaaaa (Post 13628697)
When I make gravy I usually put equal amounts of the fat from the drippings and flour, then whisk until the flour turns golden brown then add in the reserved drippings and stock and simmer until thick. When using the guar gum you would mix it with some of the fat from the pan drippings, mix the drippings and stock together in the pan then add the guar/fat mixture and simmer until thick right?

Feel free to try that. I really would suggest, though, that you just heat the mixture you want to thicken, and TOTALLY SEPARATELY mix the gum with some oil that's liquid at room temp (we are talking a teaspoon or less) and stir that into the hot food.

There is a tradeoff between the purity of avoiding that extra oil vs. the possibility of lumps, and I for one am so SICK of those lumps I will just use the oil.

Even the old sprinkle and whisk method worked mostly, most of the time, if you were adept enough at it. I was just looking for something that didn't require any finesse.

Ginaaaaaa 06-25-2010 11:12 AM

Oh, so heat the gravy first then add the guar/oil mixture. Sounds easy enough!!

Beeb 06-25-2010 09:28 PM

Gotta love your take on Scarlett in your heading, Ravenrose! :high5:

jlp2009 06-26-2010 09:29 AM

I have only been using these thickeners in cold applications. I have had to use the blender or hand held blender, which is a pain. I am gonna try this method using coconut oil. I never know how much thickener to use. It's always a guessing game for me.
Thanks for the helpful tip!

junglequeen32 10-09-2012 06:46 PM

Thanks so much Ravenrose!
 
Ravenrose, you're a guar gum genius!!! I just made onion gravy and if my husband had gone on any more about how much he loved it, I was going to suggest they get a room! It was smooth and fantastic on the first try, thanks to you!:jumpjoy:

SkeeterN 10-09-2012 08:06 PM

Amazing! So glad I read this. Thanks

rosethorns 10-09-2012 08:16 PM

Wow so glad this was bump up. Very good info.

mmorris 10-10-2012 12:31 PM

Definatly going to try this :)

Barbo 10-10-2012 10:39 PM

RAVENROSE you are the new Scarlett of Guar.
"As God is my witness, I shall never be hungry again"
Scarlett in "Gone with the Wind:

Ginaaaaaa 10-11-2012 02:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Barbo (Post 16006639)
RAVENROSE you are the new Scarlett of Guar.
"As God is my witness, I shall never be hungry again"
Scarlett in "Gone with the Wind:

Haha Barb, I was wondering what that reminded me of. :)

nancycom 04-20-2013 09:12 AM

onion gravy!!??
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by junglequeen32 (Post 16003690)
Ravenrose, you're a guar gum genius!!! I just made onion gravy and if my husband had gone on any more about how much he loved it, I was going to suggest they get a room! It was smooth and fantastic on the first try, thanks to you!:jumpjoy:

Can I have your recipe for Onion gravy please? sounds wonderful!

bacon bit 04-20-2013 09:16 AM

Oh my gosh, what a good tip! My xanthan gum has been sitting there since the first three times I tried so hard to whisk it is quickly. Amazing!


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:43 AM.