Whipping siphons are easy and fun to use. This Valentine’s Day, try wowing your special someone with a Modernist dessert created with nitrous oxide or carbon dioxide. Use our suggestions below for tasty ideas beyond the realm of whipped cream.
- Lemon Curd: Try using a whipping siphon instead of a pastry bag for piping your lemon curd. This will give it a foamy texture. Serve it atop raspberry sablé cookies or to make a pie using the flaky pie crust from Modernist Cuisine at Home.
- Microwaved Cake: This dessert is a cinch to make. You can use our recipe in Modernist Cuisine or Modernist Cuisine at Home or even just use a boxed mix. Dispense the batter from the siphon into a paper cup, microwave, and serve!
- Fizzy Fruit: We love using carbon dioxide to make fizzy grapes, but we’ve also used it to carbonate lychees and cranberries.
For most baking and savory applications, such as the Lemon Curd recipe, the Microwaved Cake recipe, and making whipped cream, you’ll need nitrous oxide (N2O) chargers. For carbonation applications, including the fizzy fruit technique, you’ll need carbon dioxide (CO2) chargers. Nitrous oxide dissolves into fats and is flavorless, as opposed to carbon dioxide, which dissolves in water and imparts a sharp flavor of carbonation. If you were to use CO2 instead of N2O when making whipped cream, for instance, the tangy carbonated flavor would fool your brain into thinking the cream had spoiled, which is not a pleasant sensation!
For more great dessert ideas, check out the Custards and Pies chapter of Modernist Cuisine at Home.