The adventure begins!

Something got me reading the Wikipedia page for headcheese.  From there, I ended up looking at the page on aspic!

On the aspic Wikipedia page, it mentions that tomato aspic is a popular form/flavor.  That little tidbit inspired me… I got to thinking how tasty an icy cold bit of tomato jello would be on a warm spring eve!   My thoughts drifted to presentation, and the idea of a ring mould seemed appropriate.  I could fill the center with a bed of crushed ice and some shrimp!

But wait… why not put the shrimp directly in to the jello?    Oh god.

Compliments Tomato Juice Knox Gelatin

I started witha can of Compliments tomato juice, and some packets of Knox gelatine.  Having never jellified tomato juice before, for this first experiment I opted out of doing any flavor enhancing of any sort… opting instead to stick to the plain tomato juice.

According to the directions on the packets of the Knox Gelatine, 1 packet is pre-measured to solidify 2 cups of liquid.  However, the instructions for activating it require the use of 1/2 cup of liquid!    So my process was this.

Starting with 1/4 cup of tomato juice in a glass, I dumped in one packet of the gelatine.  On top of this I poured 1/4 cup of boiling water from my kettle.  I stirred this for a minute or two.

Once I deemed everything to be well mixed, I added the 1/2 cup of gelatinized tomato liquid into another 1.5 cups of tomato juice I had ready in a pot.  This brought the total liquid up to 2 cups, which is the appropriate amount according to the instructions on the Knox package.

I poured one cup of the mixture into a ceramic ramekin I had handy, and let it set up in the fridge overnight.   Here are the results!

Heating up the mold Tomato Jello 1

To get the jello out of the ramekin, I sat it in a hot water bath for a minute or two.  This probably explains the excess liquid on the plate.

Tomato Jello 2

Verdict?   Well, first of all, the final product wasn’t quite as firm as I’d like it to be.  So next time I’ll probably up the gelatine ratio.  Second, when I was tasting, there were little bits of clear gelatine mixed in to the tomato… probably due to a failure to properly dissolve the gelatine… so I need to watch that.

I have another batch in the fridge with chopped shrimp added to it.  It seemed to set up the same as the non-shrimp version, so I guess the shrimp doesn’t really affect the gelatine!  Onwards and upwards.

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