Thursday, May 25, 2017

One Ingredient Challenge: Fizzy Fruit

Part of an ongoing series of cooking from scratch. That is, we cook something from basic items that don't have multiple ingredients (e.g. store-bought spaghetti sauce includes all sorts of spices and maybe other stuff too; we'd start with tomatoes and individual spices and add them together to make our own sauce). See other challenges here.

This particular challenge is unique. My wife found out about fizzy fruit through the wonders of the randomness of the internet. Fizzy fruit is introducing carbonation into fruit through the use of dry ice. We took the recipe from Chef Steps and didn't change a thing.

The basic recipe is putting fruit in a container (like a cooler) with the dry ice (about a pound is good). Trick #1--The dry ice should be covered with a towel or rag to keep from freezing the fruit. Trick #2--The cooler should be wrapped in plastic wrap to keep the dry ice fumes (scientifically known as Carbon Dioxide) from dissipating.

The cooler under wraps

We set this up the night before my daughter's First Communion, hoping to spring it on the guests at the party afterward. We used red grapes, blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries.

Prepping fruit

In the First Communion dress (in case you missed the earlier post)

When we cracked open the cooler just before the party, there was no hiss or blast of cold air. We got the fruit out and found that most had frozen. We had covered the dry ice with a dish towel but maybe we should have used a more substantial towel. We plated the fruit with the hope of some thawing.

The goods

My daughter pealed a grape to see the bubbles, but there were none.

Cracking open a grape

Luscious (but not visibly fizzy) insides

Even so, we could taste a little fizz with the grapes. The blueberries and the blackberries also worked well. The strawberries did not work so well. The guests were impressed but not wowed by our fizzy fruit. I think we overdosed on the dry ice and may have to scale back next time. The video never mentioned the fruit freezing. Maybe we've made a new discovery?

After dinner that evening, we had fun doing some simple experiments with the leftover dry ice. First we put a chunk in a glass of water and saw the carbon dioxide ooze over. Then, we put soap in the glass of water to make a huge pile of bubbles. Finally, we tried filling balloons with carbon dioxide. Getting the ice inside the balloon was too hard, so we put the ice in a beer bottle and the balloon over the top. The balloon filled but did not fly off. We were too busy having fun to take pictures!

Good luck if you try this for your next big party!

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