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on 22 July 2011
I'd always been fascinated by the molecular gastronomy that I'd seen on TV, a fusion of science and food to create unique dishes combining aesthetics and flavour in ways where imagination is the only limit. As a bit of a foodie myself, I had always wished to be able to create such things from my own home, but never really thought it was a valid option until I heard mention of the Molecule-R kit on one of my favourite recipe blogs. The second I had gathered the pennies and saw it on Amazon, I snatched it up.

The kit itself looks fantastic. The outer packaging is covered in tantalising images of some of the many creations possible with the use of the kit, and on the inside you are presented with 6 silver-grey boxes, all clearly labeled with their additives and tools, along with a DVD. The DVD has a number of recipes all presented well - the videos are very clear, and the serving suggestions are inspirational. If used on a computer, the DVD also contains 50 recipe booklets in English and French. Additional recipe videos can also be found on their YouTube channel.

The box of tools contains a draining spoon, a set of measuring spoons, 4 pippettes, a syringe, and a couple of lengths of silicone tubing - all food-safe, of course. These tools, along with the 5 additives (xanthan gum, agar-agar, calcium lactate, sodium alginate and soy lecithin - all vegetarian/vegan), give you everything you need to create a wide range of foods both following the recipes, and simple rules that you can learn along the way to convert any food into a molecular delight.

So far I have not had the chance to experiment much, however I did manage to give spherification (making foods into bubbles with a liquid center) on some yogurt. With a combination of the clear recipe, convenient tools, and pre-portioned additives, the recipe was easy, looked great, and tasted delicious. I am looking forward to getting even more creative with some of the other recipe suggestions.

The cost of the kit is reasonable, however I would say the only real downside to this kit for a customer from the UK is the price of refills, though I understand why the cost is as high as it is, with the company (Cuisine R-Evolution) being relatively small, and based way over in Canada. An alternative to the high cost of refills for the additives when the time comes would be to source out jars/bottles/bags of them elsewhere (make sure they are food grade), and just remember the portion sizes used for the sachets provided in the kit.

Overall a great and exciting product that I would recommend to anybody who enjoys getting creative in the kitchen, both for personal amusement and impressing guests.
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on 9 January 2012
I'm pretty handy in the kitchen and was looking for something that would add an extra wow factor when having guests over for dinner. When the kit arrived I was rather impressed, it's beautifully packaged and has all the tools and ingredients to get you started straight away.

My first disappointment came with the DVD. The first recipe I tried did not provide the amount of water to add to the 'bath' used as part of the cooking process. After a little digging around, I found the correct amount in another recipe video but I really felt I shouldn't have to search out this info on the DVD. Another gripe is that there isn't a section on the DVD that lists the ingredients and techniques on one screen. You need to either write it all down as you watch the video, or take your laptop into the kitchen and rewind or pause when necessary. As I mentioned before a section on the DVD with the recipe on a single screen would have been an useful improvement. PDF versions of the recipes so you can print them off, even better! I even checked the website and very few of the recipes featured on the DVD are available there so you can print them off.

My next disappointment came with the recipes themselves. Following the instructions to the letter, for the most part the food has looked wonderful, but the taste has been disappointing. Unless using a very strongly flavoured ingredient, such as balsamic vinegar for the balsamic pearls / caviar there is not a lot of flavour in the four recipes I've tried so far.

The other big issue I had with the recipes is that none of them indicate how many servings each provides. So unless you have prepared the dish before, you won't have a clue how much of your non-kit ingredients you need to buy before you cook.

Finally, since this is a beginners kit, I would have expected some 'tips for beginners' to help me along. Having made some rocket and basil spaghetti, it was a pain to suck it up into the syringe. I had to blend the mixture for a good 15 mins to ensure it was smooth enough to suck up cleanly. Then the mixture needed reheating as it had cooled and started to jellify. Having struggled initially with blockages and shot spaghetti mixture out the end of the tubing and across the kitchen after a particularly stubborn blockage. A bit more information beyond the very slick videos (they make it all look so easy!) would have been most welcome.

Having said all that, once you have got your hands dirty with a few recipes, you learn to think things through a little more and exercise what an experienced molecular chef might consider common sense. The tools and methods are all unfamiliar to the average chef but once you've made your beginners mistakes the lessons are learnt well. No matter the gripes I've had, all the failings of this package did not deter from the joy of serving up something a little different to dinner guests and looking at their faces as I explained the dish.
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on 3 July 2014
Great to do experiments in an A Level Food Technology lesson that have the Wow factor.
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on 17 January 2016
The kit was very good & we would have given it a 5* rating but we had to spend quite a long time on Google before we found out that we needed to use distilled water. Would have been nice to have had that written in the instructions.
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on 1 June 2012
The kit itself was brilliant. And the customer service from purple spaghetti was excellent. The kit arrived in the nick of time for my brothers birthday.
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on 13 December 2014
Efficient ordering, came earlier than anticipated. Order is a gift so I cannot yet comment on its quality but looks good and exactly what is required
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on 7 May 2014
Great delivery time, well presented item, perfect for foodies and budding chefs, I know nothing of molecular gastronomy but my brother loved it.
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on 9 February 2015
The experiments haven't worked particularly well so far.
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on 26 November 2015
This is an excellent product for anyone looking to have fun in the kitchen. Excellent and fast delivery. The only issue was the product description you do not get ten but five sachets of each substance. So I recommend buying from the Lakeland store so you have a better idea of what you will get.
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on 2 January 2016
Excellent
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