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Cream of Tartar

Purified tartaric acid; naturally present in grape juice in the form of salts of potassium, calcium and magnesium. It"s used in fizzy drinks and as a raising agent one of the components of baking powder. It's also used for making Fondant Icing. In food manufacturing it's given the number E336.

Cream of Tartar is more suitable than baking powder for hypertensive people on low-sodium diets because it contains potassium, not sodium. It's also non-irritating and better tolerated by people with weak digestion or low gastric secretions. Baking powder also contains sodium bicarbonate, another chemical, and acid pyrophosphate is often added.

Another point of consideration is that Cream of Tartar is required in much smaller amounts than baking powder.

Cream of Tartar is often balanced in equal quantities with baking soda when cooking very acid fruit to take away the sour taste and economise on sugar. See 'Fondant Icing'

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