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A substance that tests lower than 7 on the pH scale. Acids have a sour or sharp flavor. Acidity occurs naturally in many foods, including citrus juice, vinegar, wine, and sour milk products. Acids also act as tenderizers in marinades, helping to break down connective tissue and cell walls.
One of two major proteins found in muscles. Together with Myosin, Actin form long chainlike molecules that contract muscles. This is achieved by cross-bridging or forming mutual bonds becoming actomyosin.
The egg white. Makes up about 70% of the egg and contains most of the protein in the egg.
Amino Acid
The building blocks of proteins. Of the 20 amino acids in the human diet, 9 are called "essential" because they cannot be produced by the body and must be supplied through a person's diet.
Baking Powder
A chemical leavener made with an acid and an alkaline ingredient; most commonly these are sodium bicardonate (baking soda) and cream of tartar. When exposed to liquid, it produces carbon dioxide gas, which leavens doughs and batters. Double-acting baking powder contains ingredient that produce two leavening reactions: one upon exposure to liquid, the second when heated
A solution of salt, water, and seasonings, used to preserve or moisten food.
The process of browning sugar in the presence of heat. The caramelization of sugar occurs between 320 and 360 degrees
One of the basic nutrients used by the body as a source of energy. Types include simple (sugars) and complex (starches and fibers).
A fat soluble pigment responsible for the yellow and orange colors in fruits, vegetables, flowers and autumn leaves. They are coverted into Vitamin A in the intestinal wall. Carotenoids assist photosynthesis by trapping certain wavelengths of light and prevent chlorophyll from being overloaded and destroyed.
Carry-Over Cooking
Heat retained in cooked foods that allows them to continue cooking even after the removal from the cooking medium. Especially important to roasted foods.
A complex carbohydrate; it is the main structural component of plant cells.
Chemical Leavener
An ingredient or combination of ingredients (such as baking soda or baking powder) whose chemical action produces carbon dioxide gas, which is used to leaven baked goods.
The curdling of clumping of proteins, usually due to the application of heat or acid.
A fibrous protein found in the connective tissue of animals, used to make glue and gelatin. Breaks down into gelatin when cooked in a moist environment for an extended period of time.
Connective Tissue
Double-acting baking powder
Dry Yeast
A mixture of two or more liquids, one of which is a fat or oil and the other of which is water based, so that tiny globules of one are suspended in the other. This may involve the use of stabilizers, such as egg or mustard. Emulsions may be temporary, permanent, or semi-permanent.
The process of yeast acting to break down sugars into carbon dioxide gas and alcohol, which is essential in bread leavening and beer, wine, and spirit making. Also, the period of rising in yeast doughs.
Fibrous Protein
A protein-based substance found in animal bones and connective tissue. When dissolved in hot liquid and then cooled, it can be used as a thickener and stabilizer.
A phase in the process of thickening a liquid with starch in which the starch molecules swell to form a network that traps water molecules.
Globular Protein
A simple sugar found in honey, some fruits, and many vegetables. It has about half the sweetness of table sugar and is the preferred source of energy for the human body.
A protein present in wheat flour that develops through hydration and mixing to form elastic strands that build structure and aid in leavening.
Invert Sugars
A sugar that is a mixture of dextrose and fructose, which will not easily crystalize. These sugars can occur naturally or be created by boiling sucrose with an acid.
The simple sugar found in milk. This disacharride is the least sweet among the natural sugars.
Any ingredient or process that produces gas and causes the rising of baked goods. Can be chemical (baking powder), mechanical (folding in air in whipped egg whites), or biological (yeast).
An emulsifier found in eggs and soybeans.
Maillard Reaction
A complex browning reaction that results in the particular flavor and color of foods that do not contain much sugar, including roasted meats. The reaction, which involves carbohydrates and amino acids, is named after the French scientist who first discovered it. There are low-temperature and high-temperature Maillard reactions, the high-temperature reaction starts at 310 F
Mechanical Leavener
Air incorporated into a batter or dough to act as a leavener.
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