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These gel cubes are super easy to put together and they make a great small bite for people to enjoy. The quality of the cider you use will directly relate to how good the gels turn out. Here in New England I can get great apple cider from many of the orchards around me but many stores sell high quality cider as well.
I usually like to coat these cubes in a cinnamon-sugar mixture for extra flavor and sweetness, but sometimes I like to leave them uncoated so the cider can really shine by itself. Once you add the sugar you have to serve them quickly. These cider gels can be served hot or cold because they are made using agar.
I call for 1.0% agar in this recipe but you can lower that if you'd like a softer gel. These gels are very brittle if you just use agar in them. If you prefer a more elastic and chewy gel you can replace some of the agar with locust bean gum.
In the video I dip the gel cubes in the sugar before putting them out. That works pretty good as long as you serve them quickly, but for longer parties I've found leaving a bowl of them out with toothpicks and a bowl of the sugar coating works great. That way people can use as much sugar as they want and the gels will be fine sitting out for several hours.
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Because they use modernist ingredients, these amounts are given in metric by weight. For more information on how to measure modernist ingredients check out this article.
Blend the apple cider and agar together until well combined. Pour into a pot and bring to a boil while stirring occasionally. Let simmer for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring regularly.
Pour the cider mixture into a container and let it completely set. Once set, cube the gel. I prefer 13mm to 25mm (1/2" to 1") cubes but you can use any size you like, including other shapes.
Combine the sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. Either toss the gel cubes in the cinnamon sugar until coated well or leave them uncovered and set the bowl of coating out for your guests to dip themselves.
Place the cubes on a serving tray or in a bowl. You can either serve the cubes as finger food or provide toothpicks for people to use. If you pre-coat them they should be served within 10 minutes of coating.