All about the scientific theories behind food. Cooking myths debunked here.

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17
votes
6answers
2k views

Can food be boiled “extra fast/hard” in water?

Once water is boiling you can either leave the heat on quite high, or turn it down a bit so that it just keeps boiling. Apart from extra water vaporating, does this have any effect on the taste of ...
1
vote
1answer
501 views

How is it that (temperature) heat makes some seasonings and foods (spicy) hotter, but mellows others?

Toasting many spices,and heating some peppers increases and brings out the spice and heat. Other foods, such as onions, shallots and garlic (yes, I know they're from the same family; just can't think ...
7
votes
2answers
570 views

Does using flaked salt make a difference when using it in cooking?

I have a few recipes that call for flaked salt, I can only seem to buy it in bulk 1kg bags here. I want to know that if you use "salt" in a recipe does it really matter to the final taste what kind of ...
13
votes
3answers
8k views

Why is it that white fish do not have as strong of a “fishy” taste as other fish?

As a rule my wife does not like the taste of fish, or pretty much anything that once made its home in the water. However, she's decided to give fish another shot. Not wanting to hit her over the head ...
2
votes
1answer
134 views

Separating Chlorophyll didn't work

I tried to extract chlorophyll from spinach by blending up some spinach and water and straining out the green juice, then heating the juice. I've done it before, but this time, it wouldn't separate. ...
5
votes
3answers
681 views

Is it a misnomer when someones says you can lower acidity with sweetness?

It is commonly known that if your food is too acidic, you lower the acidity of the food by adding something sweet. Is this a misnomer? Acidity can me measured by pH. Does the sweet actually raise ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

Does placing a metal spoon in an open bottle of sparkling wine (etc.. .) help keep its fizz?

Does placing a metal spoon in an open bottles of bubbles, sparkling wine & Champagne help keep its fizz ? If so why is this ?
-2
votes
1answer
753 views

Does liquid glucose contain as much fructose as high fructose corn syrup?

Does liquid glucose contain fructose in the same ratio as high fructose corn syrup?
5
votes
2answers
4k views

Heated up oil for frying, stirred it, tiny bubbles appeared and rose slowly but with very loud popping sound - why?

Last night I tried deep frying stuff for the first time. As the oil heated in the pot, I thought it would be a good idea to stir the oil (I was really scared of it catching on fire). It was probably ...
0
votes
1answer
162 views

About Farm Chicken

For two years, I've been eating chicken grown up in farms. They don't taste like village chicken (chickens raised in villages here eating natural food). Why not? Are there any differences besides ...
-1
votes
1answer
288 views

Breading/Crumbing Chicken in their own eggs

I have heard of a new trend for recipes involving breaded chicken meat. Instead of using random eggs, the eggs laid by the very chicken you're preparing should be used for breading. This way a ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I fortify homemade soy milk?

Commercial soy milk is fortified with lots of different vitamins. Is it possible to add these vitamins to homemade soy milk? If so how would you do it? I'm not sure if we absorb the vitamins or if ...
10
votes
2answers
5k views

Why is there cornstarch in powdered sugar?

I was looking up how to make my own powdered/confectioner/icing sugar. Some 'recipes' say that you should add a bit of cornstarch while others just leave this out. So what is the role of cornstarch? ...
1
vote
2answers
699 views

Why is my pumpkin pie filling separating from my cake mix?

I decided to mix pumpkin pie filling into a mixture of spice cake mix. I mixed the filling in well and in every try, the filling stays in the middle, with the cake moving to the outside. I am ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

What effect does orange juice have when used in dough?

I was following a recipe to make some Middle Eastern inspired Olive bread, and the recipe called for a cup of orange juice in the dough. I was intrigued by this as I had not seen it before. What ...
4
votes
1answer
26k views

What causes curdling and how can you prevent it?

Some sauces are more at risk to curdle than others. What exactly (ingredients, techniques, temperature...) causes this curdling? What can you do to have the curdling risk at minimum? I'm not asking ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Why does rice expand by more than the liquid volume it's cooked in?

Does air get trapped or sucked into the rice during cooking?
3
votes
1answer
194 views

Does oxidation inhibit caramelization?

Getting ready to make some fried plantains, but I wanted to get a jump on prep before caramelizing in place (approximately 2 hours from prep). If I cut them now, and they oxidize, will this inhibit ...
3
votes
1answer
838 views

What limitations are there to sauteeing with water?

I was recently helping with some recipes and was instructed to use water for "sauteeing" onions, celery, garlic, etc in place of oil (scare quotes on "saute" since it involves frying in oil or other ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

What are the optimal conditions in making wild yeast starter?

I recently learned that I don't need to buy packets of yeast to make bread. I can create a sour dough starter by utilizing the wild yeast floating around in the air. Take a look at this article for ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Why do chocolate chips stay softer after being baked?

I could be wrong, but I have the feeling that after baking chocolate chip cookies, the chocolate chips are still melted; or at least a lot softer than before you bake the cookies. It's logical that ...
0
votes
2answers
363 views

What common household drink will remove burning from mouth? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Cure for burns from hot peppers / capsicum oil? Ya, just ate something spicy and my mouth is on fire. I tried drinking water and that didn't help. I also tried orange ...
2
votes
1answer
597 views

Why does boiling cream have such a drastic effect on my salted caramel?

We have a recipe for a salted caramel spread that is basically a big pan of sugar, glucose, milk and butter, cooked until it becomes a thick paste, then mixed with double cream to achieve a smooth ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

What determines how well cheese melts

I have had my fair share of eating cheese and experimenting with them. Sometimes they come out heavenly while other times, it turn out to be a huge flop. Usually when it flops, it's because I am ...
7
votes
1answer
638 views

What happens to cheese as it ages?

An answer* on another one of my questions sparked this: What is actually happening to the cheese on a molecular and chemical level as it ages? What processes are going on and why is there an upper ...
4
votes
1answer
393 views

What is the rule of thumb for mixing doughs?

Without delving too deeply into specialty doughs, but addressing more than just cakes and bread, what concerns can I evaluate when calculating the technique for approaching a dough? For instance, ...
7
votes
2answers
742 views

Why does Béarnaise separate as opposed to crème brûlée or lemon curd?

When making creme brulees in the oven, they are heated to something like 100° C, or over. When making bernaise, heating it like that is a sure way of making it separate. As far as I've understood, it ...
4
votes
1answer
807 views

Does adding oil to pasta water reduce the tendency to boil over?

I know that adding oil to pasta water doesn't keep the noodles from sticking--much better to do that after cooking. I also know that there's no need to cook pasta at a rolling boil. My question is ...
3
votes
1answer
947 views

What makes a souffle rise?

A successful souffle is usually one that rises high above its own vessel. What active ingredients / parts of a souffle (regardless of the type of souffle) typically makes it lift or rise?
3
votes
2answers
709 views

Does the alcohol in wine affect cooking process?

When cooking with wine or other booze does the alcohol have an affect on the cooking process? Example: deglazing a pan or making a wine-based sauce. My understanding is that the alcohol evaporates ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

What happens when cheese is melted in a frying pan?

A guilty pleasure of mine is to put a small block of cheddar into a dry frying pan and cook it. The cheese melts and an oil comes out of the cheese. In this state, the oil drains off very easily and ...
4
votes
2answers
888 views

What can I add to boiled lollies to stop them from melting in humid weather?

I've made a gingerbread house this year and popped in stained glass windows. The windows are made of crushed up boiled lollies. I baked the gingerbread, then added the windows, then baked the bread ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

Coffee foam vs. Tea foam

One sign of really good fresh well-roasted coffee beans is foam. When you pour hot water into the French press, it foams, often forming a head up to 2" high. And when you use an espresso machine, ...
-6
votes
1answer
211 views

Do you guys know that there is no such thing as an amateur chef? [closed]

They are called cooks. It's like saying there are amateur heartsurgeons.
4
votes
5answers
11k views

What happens if I brine my turkey for 2 days?

I have a logistical problem that leaves me with no fridge room for 2 days before Thanksgiving... I always brine my turkey, so I don't have any questions about that, but typically it's only an 8 - 10 ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there any advantage to adding salt to onion while frying itself?

Is there any advantage to adding salt to onion while frying itself rather than adding it the last. My friends say it removes moisture from onion. Is it true ? Why is removing moisture from onion ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

What are ways to reduce cellulose in vegetables and fruits?

I (and some family members) have a medical condition that affects the ability to digest cellulose, so we have to avoid most fresh fruits and vegetables. We have found that cooking vegetables helps a ...
1
vote
1answer
673 views

Red beans and rice with salt pork

Does salt pork have to be fully cooked before you put it in your dish? I am cooking red beans and rice, and the dish calls for a ham hock. I don't have one of those, so I opted to use salt pork ...
6
votes
1answer
233 views

What property makes a liquid soapy/bubbly?

Is there a scientific or food industry term for what makes a water solution behave like a detergent, and perhaps an associated unit of measure? For example, the pH of a solution measures its acidity; ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Why does white vinegar taste better when at restaurants?

Just got back from dinner, where I had some decent fish and chips with white vinegar, and a thought came to me: At restaurants, I've found the white vinegar there helps to accentuate the flavour of ...
6
votes
1answer
662 views

Creating differing temperature fluid gels that stay separate

At the Fat Duck they serve a mug of hot and iced tea. The drink is served in a single cup yet the two different temperature drinks stay separate side by side with no barrier between them. I believe ...
9
votes
4answers
20k views

How to make puffed/popped rice?

Is it possible to make puffed rice at home like the rice used in breakfast cereals? I have a hot air popcorn maker and have experimented with that with little success. I imagine the problem is to do ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

How much alcohol remains in strawberries soaked in alcohol?

I know that the alcohol content of food that is prepared with alcohol is a tricky study, as evidenced by the fact that food left out overnight stored overnight loses, by one study, 30% of its alcohol ...
5
votes
4answers
477 views

How do I diagnose and adjust my bread recipe?

Our family has maintained a sourdough start for several decades. It has great flavor, but we use it mostly for pancakes. I've tried making bread with it several times, but never get good results. ...
3
votes
1answer
461 views

What makes alcohol-free beer sweet?

Yesterday, I had a can of alcohol free beer which tasted almost like normal beer, just without the alcohol bite. Practically any other alcohol free beer I've had has a different taste. They all are ...
0
votes
1answer
829 views

How does meat nutritional profile change in freezing?

My teacher said that you cannot stop fats going bad with freezing. So fatty meat is not good idea to freeze over a long time. Are there other factors to consider in freezing meat?
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What can I do to dry out my marshmallows?

The recipe that I used did not call for cornstarch or corn syrup. The result is that they are slightly wet. Can I do anything to dry them up, such as dusting them with corn flour? I did dredge them ...
5
votes
3answers
5k views

Why do my egg whites separate after whipping?

Every time I try to whip egg whites, I seem to end up with the same problem. After a good bit of strenuous beating with the whisk, the egg whites finally reach the "firm peak" stage. I then go grab ...
2
votes
2answers
487 views

looking for edible paper

At some point I came across some edible paper. I don't know which company makes it or where to find it? I think I recall that it was possible to write on it. I encountered it back in the '80's. ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Why do marshmallows poof up so huge when put in the microwave?

As anyone who's put marshmallows in the microwave knows, they expand a ton! Sometimes they puff up to literally more than twice their original size (YouTube video for those who haven't seen it). So, ...