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iSi Whippers: Foams, Desserts, Cocktails, and More: Endless Possibilities  
Michael Voltaggio
Michael Voltaggio uses the iSi Gourmet Whip Plus to aerate tom kai coconut soup, which he then freezes with liquid nitrogen for a great in-you-mouth texture.
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Dave Arnold’s Jalapeño-Infused Tequila

Dave Arnold’s Jalapeño-Infused Tequila

Infusions are a testament to the notion that chefs are also food-scientists who must embrace experimentation, uncertainty, and surprise. They are used to enhance flavors, create unique flavor profiles, and breakdown complex flavors. A fantastic infusion can elevate a bar menu from average to extraordinary, add surprise to a classic savory sauce, and transform a simple dessert into an herb-infused masterpiece.


Benefits of infusing with the iSi whipper
  • Efficient and Effective – The traditional infusion method of steeping and soaking can take days with the potential to lose certain fresh flavors. Even expensive vacuum sealers can take up to four hours. The iSi whipper method allows for pure, flavorful infusions in just under a minute.
  • Precision and Control – iSi’s cream chargers contain 8 grams of pure N2O gas, delivering consistent infusions time after time.
  • Compact and Cost Effective – Vacuum packers used to create rapid infusions can set you back up to $2,500 and take up a lot of kitchen space. For less than $200, the iSi Gourmet Whip Plus is affordable and compact enough for any kitchen or bar.
Tips for Success
  • Experiment – Depending on the product, infusion may require different numbers of chargers and amounts of time to reach the desired flavor. We recommend conducting a few test runs to determine the optimal amount of gas and time for each infusion—not too daunting considering these test runs will only take a few minutes.  
  • Use Room Temperature Ingredients – Cold ingredients will result in a weaker infusion. Use warm or room temperature foods and liquids for the most flavorful results.
  • Vent Quickly – A rapid release of gas forces the gas to penetrate more quickly. Be sure to capture any liquid that escapes by cupping the nozzle while holding the whipper in the upright position.
One Technique for the Whole KitchenThe iSi whipper can be used to create infusions in savory, pastry, and mixology. The technique is universal.

Chef Ryan Poli's Fish Tacos: Hiramasa Sashimi, Mango-Papaya-Serrano Chili Relish, Avocado Purée, and Tortilla Infusion

Chef Ryan Poli's "Fish Tacos": Hiramasa Sashimi, Mango-Papaya-Serrano Chili Relish, Avocado Purée, and Tortilla Infusion

Savory:
Infuse olive oils or vinaigrettes with herbs that are good for dipping, marinating, and cooking.
  • FCI’s Dave Arnold makes Lemon-infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil with his iSi whipper
  • Chef Rocco DiSpirito creates a truffle-infused vinaigrette to tie in the flavors of his Foie Gras Cru.
  • Chef Ryan Poli of Tavernita translates the flavors of a traditional tortilla to create “Fish Tacos” by  infusing milk with corn nuts.

Pastry:
Infuse water or milk with flowers, herbs, spices, fruit, or vegetables to create subtle or bold flavors.

  • At the 2010 StarChefs.com International Pastry Competition, winner Ron Paprocki infused milk with celery and juniper to create Celery Ice Cream.
Mixologist Sam Anderson's Ring of Fire

Mixologist Sam Anderson's Ring of Fire

Mixology:
When it comes to infusions in mixology, the applications are limitless. Whether you want to add smoky flavors, create custom herb-infused vodkas, or add heat and flavor to tequila, infusions allow mixologists to put their own stamp on their cocktail creations.

Add Smoky Flavors
  • Mixologist Benjamin Schiller infuses water with charred white oak chips to create smoky ice cubes for his Scorched Earth Cocktail.

Our Favorite Herb/Spice + Liquor Combinations
  • Mezcal and Rosemary – Mezcals are by nature smoky and, when infused with floral notes like rosemary, help make the perfect winter cocktail. See Mixologist Samuel Anderson’s Ring of Fire.
  • Jasmine and Vodka – Vodka’s subtle natural flavors provide an excellent stage for herbal infusions. Mixologist Danielle Motor combines jasmine-infused vodka with honey and citrus juices to create her cocktail: Second Act.
  • Amaro and Lavender – Accentuate existing herbal aromas and flavors of Amaro liqueur with lavender. See Albert Trummer’s Cherry Americano.

Create Simple Syrup
  • Instead of crushing plants to extract flavor and ending up with murky syrup, place whole plants into the iSi whipper for clear, flavorful syrup like Gina Chersevani of PS7’s simple mint syrup.

Pack Heat and Flavor
  • Traditional infusions are excellent in packing heat but often leave flavor behind. When creating spicy infusions, transferring heat as well as flavor is not just a bonus, it’s a necessity. Watch as FCI guru Dave Arnold prepares jalapeno-infused tequila.

Make Your Own Bitters
Make Your Own Vermouth
  • Good vermouth requires patience. Speed up the process and still attain a deep infusion using an iSi whipper. A great vermouth can differentiate a bar’s program and make it stand out. Using 14 different herbs and spices, Mixologist Jackson Cannon creates Noilly Ambre Vermouth.
To read more about infusions, visit Dave Arnold’s blog post on CookingIssues.com:
 
 

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