Top view of cut up red cabbage
Cabbage Water
Is Your Secret Weapon For Vibrant Color-Changing Food
By Alli Neal
Foods and flowers that are naturally purple and blue, such as blueberries and butterfly pea flowers, can be used to color a variety of recipes. However, if you can't get your hands on butterfly pea flowers, purple cabbage water can also help you in coloring your recipes using some simple ingredients and a little chemistry.
The color change happens because the anthocyanin molecule—a natural, water soluble chemical in purple cabbage—changes structure at different pH levels. That’s chemistry lingo to say that adding an acid like lemon juice will make cabbage water turn pink, and adding an alkaline substance like baking soda will turn them blue.
Suncore Foods uses the butterfly pea flower tea to make a beautiful blue pudding and homemade blue boba pearls, but both could be swapped for cabbage water. To turn your vermicelli noodles purple, soak them in cabbage water to quickly take on the bluish purple tint and then turn them pink in an acidic sauce for ombre noodles.