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37

Whisk(e)y has some crazy chemistry going on inside of it, due to the complex interactions between water, alcohols, oils, esters and other compounds of various complexity. The profile of these chemicals will vary between different whiskey/whisky styles, but the overall chemistry is similar. Simple effects of dilution Adding water, or serving on the rocks, ...


33

It's no secret, here it is! Complete with the cocaine that was removed from Coke's production in 1903: Picture and text from This American Life The radio broatcast recording on the above link makes a very compelling case that the picture at the top of the page is really the original formula for Coke. Of course it has changed over the years; it's not ...


18

If a wine maker loves their wine, and their customers, they will use screw caps. All the studies have come back positive for screw caps. See screw cap initiative for starters. Some main points are: Corks taint the wine Corks, real or synthetic, have a very high failure rate. Screw caps are basically 100% effective (maybe too effective) Wine ages better ...


15

Let a hot pepper (jalapeño or habañero, perhaps) soak in your liquid for however long it takes to achieve the desired hotness.


14

Hot Air Popper The cheapest and simplest is to use a (cheap) electric hot air popper. The old favorite is the West Bend Poppery, but you can use anything as long as the vent holes (where the hot air comes in) are on the sides rather than the bottom. I've roasted a lot of coffee this way. It works, but there are a few downsides. The biggest problems: The ...


14

Crema is a food foam. For crema to form and survive long enough for us to enjoy the espresso, something needs to hold the bubbles of the foam together. In most food foams proteins help hold up the bubbles, but in crema it is a mixture of proteins and oils. This makes it hard to predict what makes good crema. From practice, good crema comes from: Enough ...


13

You could use a drill and soup can. http://lifehacker.com/5494207/roast-coffee-with-a-drill-and-a-soup-can Other life hacker tips for roasting coffee at home on the cheap http://lifehacker.com/226925/diy-coffee-roasting http://lifehacker.com/365235/roll-your-own-coffee-roaster-on+the+cheap


10

I just use in any pan. Put in a single layer of beans (don't overcrowd them) and heat it to medium heat. Keep shaking the pan from time to time, so the beans turn and will be roasted from all sides. After a few (3 or 4) minutes you will hear the beans starting to "crack". At this point, they will be lightly roasted. You could stop now or keep going, if you ...


10

A traditional Manhattan is two shots of rye or bourbon, one shot of sweet vermouth, a dash of bitters and a cherry, shaken and strained into a martini glass. I prefer on the rocks in a rocks glass, myself. A perfect Manhattan is similar, but uses a half shot each of sweet and dry vermouth. They tend to be more interesting when paired with a higher quality ...


10

That's a ridiculously huge question. So huge that you'd need a whole book to answer it! Fortunately, that book has been written: What to Drink With What You Eat The Definitive Guide to Pairing Food with Wine, Beer, Spirits, Coffee, Tea — Even Water — Based on Expert Advice from America's Best Sommeliers. by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page If you really ...


10

You need something with fat or alcohol. The burning is caused by capsaicin, a molecule found in peppers, which is not water-soluble. If you go for the alcohol, you'll need something with higher percentage, not a beer, and it might result in more burning. It is easier to drink whole milk, especially because you might need lots of the drink if it is too ...


9

As a beer brewer, I'm pretty concerned with fizz ;) Since the below may be a little tl;dr, the short answer to your question is, "I don't think so." This is actually the first time I've heard of the metal spoon "trick", so I can't directly comment on that, but I'll share a little of what I know about carbonation. Carbonation is carbon dioxide (CO2) that ...


9

An oenologist (a wine expert), once told me that for young wines, artificial corks (and probably screw caps) are perfectly alright. Young wines should be consumed within a year or two. However, for aged wines, he'd stick with natural cork, because cork lets the wine breathe, letting the wine mature further inside the bottle. The debate around synthetic ...


8

Do you like it cold-brewed? The absolute best thing to do from my perspective is to stir half a cup of grounds into a quart of water and let sit overnight; you can then filter it using your french press or a regular plastic filter the next day to get a low-acid coffee concentrate. Mix one part of this with 1-2 parts of water (hot or cold, adjust for ...


8

Simple Syrup is sugar that is has been dissolved in water. Heating speeds the process, and also allows the water to "absorb" more sugar. I don't remember the chemistry of why the sugar doesn't crystallize at room temp, but it doesn't. It is typically made in a 1:1 mixture .. heat a cup of water to boiling, add a cup of sugar, stir until the sugar is ...


8

There's a lovely middle-eastern recipe for mint lemonade. I used to make loads of this stuff in my navy days. So, for a jug serving six sailors: Juice of about 2-3 lemons Six tablespoons of sugar nice handful of mint Put the mint and sugar in the jug and pour about half a cup of boiling water. Stir well, and leave for a few minutes so that the mint can ...


8

I have mixed them with unflavored gelatin to get some really interesting flavored deserts. Additionally, they are a nice addition to a pitcher of iced tea, making it a flavored iced tea. I use at about 1/2 the recommended strength in addition to the tea, two tubes/packets of the flavored stuff for a 1/2 gallon of tea.


8

You cannot easily create a powder from real chocolate, which contains a great deal of cocoa butter, making it very difficult to powder. While you can chop it finely, that still may be less than ideal for quickly creating hot chocolate. Instead, based on an idea from Cook's Illustrated, you can make a thick ganache to use as essentially a hot chocolate ...


7

You'll get a strong/different flavor using the lemon zest. I personally like it. That said, if you mash/muddle the lemons you'll probably get much the same flavor as zesting.


7

The classic mistake when making a Mojito or a Julep is to over muddle the mint. Pounding away at the mint will release so much flavour from it, that you won't taste any of the other ingredients. A perfect Mojito should comprise a balance of flavours. The other main constituents do not have a particularly strong flavour, so its very easy to swamp them with ...


7

I've used a french press with good success when a steam wand was not available. Pour some warm milk in and froth away. You're not going to get the same shimmery-silky texture that a steam wand will do, but it'll be pretty decent. The combination of a wide surface area and lots of small holes is excellent for introducing lots of air into the milk and ...


7

Tea contains a lot of flavinoid compounds notably tannins. Tannins are astringent and have a very strong bitter flavor. The tannins are released much more slowly compared to the other flavor compounds. So when brewed for too long or too hot, much more tannins are released into the brew along and hence the resulting tea is much more bitter.


7

It sounds like you are looking for Pisang Ambon, a banana liqeur, which is seethrough and green. It is popularly served over ice, mixed with orange juice for a Tutti Frutti kind of drink. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pisang_Ambon


6

When we make mojitos, we put the lime, sugar, and mint into the glass then crush it with a wooden spoon. Do this separately for each drink. This is pretty time consuming which isn't a problem when you're making 1 or 2 glasses. If you're making more, you may want to use another method.


6

You could try Peychaud's Bitters (difficult to find), Fernet-Branca, orange bitters or other types of bitters. Worcestershire sauce may also be used as a substitute but works well in savory dishes. I wouldn't recommend it for a Manhattan. Or, if you're very ambitious you can try to make your own bitters, although the ingredient list is somewhat ...


6

Hmm, I'd look for pure Capsaicin if all you want is the heat. It's colorless/odorless so could work, but I'm not sure where you can find it. I've heard of white, hot sauces which may work for you, here is an example


6

This answer is specific to scotch whisky. In the process of making scotch whisky, distillers traditionally burn bales of dried peat moss to stop the the barley. The peat smoke produces "phenolic" compounds which give the scotch its smokey flavor. That's why smoky scotches are also called "peaty" (or have "high phenols" or "high PPM"). Phenols are highly ...


6

America's Test Kitchen recently tested Moka Pots. In the video, they specifically say to pour all of the coffee immediately when it's done brewing. They don't mention a metallic taste, but they do say that not leaving the coffee in the pot is important for flavor, and that it was equally true for all of the models they tested. So for your purposes, I would ...


5

I can't address "better," but it may be different. When you make simple syrup, you boil the sugar water for some amount of time. The effect of boiling the sugar water is to break down some of the sucrose into its component sugars, glucose and fructose. The result is somewhat sweeter than the same amount of merely-dissolved sucrose.



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