A little extra effort to make gomme instead of simple syrup will give your cocktails a silky texture you can't get from plain simple syrup.
Notes: Gum Arabic is also known as Acacia gum or mesca. Some baking specialty stores or natural food stores carry it. You can also order it from Amazon. Be sure to buy food-grade gum. Adding one tablespoon of vodka to the mixture before storing will extend the life of your syrup for another month or more.
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- Yield:Makes about 1 1/4 cups
- Active time: 15 minutes
- Total time:3 to 4 hours
- 3/4 cup water (divided)
- 4 tablespoons powdered gum Arabic
- 1 1/3 cup sugar
Heat 1/4 cup of the water to a near-boil, about 3 minutes. Put the gum powder in a glass or small jar, then slowly stir in the hot water. Stir together until all the powder is integrated. (Some small white clumps may remain.) Let this mixture sit for 2 to 3 hours. When it looks more like a gel, stir again to smooth out the mixture. (It's OK if there is a small layer of white foam.)
Heat the remaining water with the sugar until it forms a syrup, about 7 to 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, and then slowly stir in the gum mixture. Simmer on low heat for about 5 minutes while stirring briskly. Do not bring to a boil. You'll end up with a very thick syrup that may have a fine layer of white foam on top. Let this cool.
Once the syrup is cooled, stir again and skim off small clumps or thick foam, if any. Transfer to a glass jar or bottle and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 months.