Tapioca Maltodextrin (some manufacturers may also call it “N-Zorbit M”) is a modified tapioca starch.
As you might remember, from my video on Kuzu, natural starches absolve water and get swallen by it. Therefore, that’s how they thicken liquids. However, natural starches are sensitive to acidity, sugars & fats! In other words, natural starch will not interact in any way with products high in fats. Fat will coat the starch molecule and prevent it from absorbing water.
That’s exactly where modified starches come in place. Tapioca Maltodextrin was modified in a way that it can interact with oily & fatty products. It also does not require any heat exposure to get activated, unlike natural starches.
In the video above, I show you 3 different applications of Tapioca Maltodextrin (hereinafter “TM”) in cooking:
- to make powders
- to make pastes
- to make edible glass/film (in different shapes)
Either of these culinary application will require for different amounts of TM to be added and different treatments.
In case of Sesame oil powder, you will need to add as much as 90% of TM to the sesame oil and mix it until it completely absorbs the oil and becomes powder.
While in case of bacon paste, to start with, you’ll need to render fat off bacon, cool it down a bit and only then add 40% TM.
And finally, in case of Peas & Nori glass / canapé tarlets, there won’t be any fat involved at all in cooking. Here we’ll use TM’s polysaccharide nature to make very brittle film/glass out of vegetable purée. You’ll need to add 20% of TM to the mixture and dehydrate it for 4 hours at 170F to get to the right texture.
With TM you can make powders out of any oily/fatty products. Think about Nutella, caramel, Parmesan cheese, walnut oil, hazelnut oil, etc.
The other cool property of TM is that it increases the volume of the end product. This property is often used by commercial food manufacturers, who powder different fatty products to make them less fatty and lower in calories, while remaining the same volume.
And finally, it’s worth noting that while TM does not give any off or starchy taste to the end product, if you are working with ratios above 50-60% it will give a very slight sweet taste (like in Peas & Nori tarlets example).