In the world of crispness, it’s all about the bubbles. Or at least, the sound of bubbles popping. Studies at Oxford University have shown that when we bite into a surface filled with small brittle cells, each fracture releases a quick burst of high-frequency sound. The more fractures in a bite, the more bursts of sound, and the more crispy the food seems to be. So how do we make things super crispy? Why, we add bubbles. Through carbonation to be exact. Let’s try it out with onion rings.
H. Alexander Talbot and Aki Kamozawa run a culinary consulting business called Ideas In Food. They started a blog in 2004 to showcase their research into food preparation, cooking techniques, and flavor combinations. Recently, they put it all into their first book, Ideas in Food: Great Recipes and Why They Work, which should quickly be in your hands and on your kitchen bookshelf. I was looking for a small course to add for a dinner I made a few weeks ago and came across their post for Watermelon and Coffee:
These cubes of watermelon are seasoned with cane sugar, instant coffee and salt. As is they are amazing. When you vacuum seal them and let them marinate for a day their taste potential increases exponentially.
Something quick to bring a little zing to my dinner – perfect. I found a nice watermelon down at the Pike Place Market, picked up some Via instant coffee from Starbucks and went to work. Chop. Season. Seal. Sit. Who said modern cookery is difficult?
Salty, sweet, bitter – it’s a tantalizing combination for sure. I think I’ll juice a jalapeño and add it in next time for a spicy kick. And why not – it’s just another idea in food, right?