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June 27, 2004

I Will Sleep Easier Tonight Knowing These things.

The Thermochemical Joy of Cooking

Myth: Storing coffee in the freezer keeps it fresh.

Truth: The daily removal of java beans from the freezer causes their temperature to change. This encourages condensation which, like prolonged exposure to air, degrades the flavor of the beans.

Myth: Putting oil in pasta water prevents the noodles from sticking together.

Truth: Starch released by the noodles as they cook causes them to stick together. Using ample water will help dilute the starch. Oil floats to the surface of the denser water and has little effect on the noodles.

Myth: Washing mushrooms causes them to soak up excess water.

Truth: Even when soaked for 5 minutes, standard button mushrooms retain less than 3 percent of their weight in water. Washing affects them even less.

Myth: Leaving the avocado pit in the bowl will prevent guacamole from turning brown.

Truth: Enzymes in an avocado's flesh become discolored when exposed to oxygen. Leaving the pit in your guacamole keeps only the portion under it green.

Posted by tbartels at June 27, 2004 01:14 AM

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