Fibers and Digestion

At the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique station in Nantes, Marc Lahaye and his colleagues have used such tools to study the dietary fibers of marine macroalgae. It used to be customary to classify fibers according to their degree of solubility in response to various enzymatic treatments. Water-soluble fibers certain pectins (fruit polysaccharides that cause jellies to gel), algal polysaccharides, and certain kinds of hemicellulose were distinguished from insoluble fibers such as...

The same wellcalibrated glass is best for both white and red wines

Disciples of the grape are seldom without a glass. But which one Generations of gourmets have debated the optimum form and size of a wine glass. In France, the Institut National des Appellations d'Origine (inao) has mandated use of a glass recognized by the International Standards Organization ( iso) whose bowl is about twice as high as it is wide. Is it really the best Because German tasters recommended a rounder glass, Ulrich Fischer, of the Oenology Department at the University of Neustadt,...

Chemists look to improve bread dough by investigating the protein bonds that form its glutenous network

The behavior of wheat flour can be understood by analyzing the properties of its two main components starch granules, which swell up in the presence of water, and proteins, which form a glutenous network as dough is kneaded. How do the forces among proteins contribute to the mechanical properties of the dough It has long been known that bonds between the sulfur atoms found in wheat proteins play a role in structuring gluten. Other forces have been discovered as well. Gluten is a viscoelastic...

The Whitening of Chocolate

To keep chocolate from turning white, keep it chilled. why does chocolate become covered with an ugly white film after a few days Michel Ollivon and G rard Keller of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (crns), in collaboration with Christophe Loisel and Guy Lecq of the Danone Group, have recently explained how certain constituents of this partially liquid mixture migrate and crystallize on its surface, causing it to change color. Chocolate is a dispersion of sugar crystals and...

Make All Desserts with Chocolate

From puff pastry it is but a short step to make both shortcrust pastry (including the basic pie dough used to line meat or fish pies) and sugar crust with chocolate one has only to replace butter with chocolate whose lipid composition has been changed. Similarly, one could make chocolate savarin dough, chocolate brioche dough, chocolate cream puff dough, almond or chocolate cookie dough, and so on. One might even be tempted to use chocolate in an almond custard Add almond powder and an alcohol...

How to make a chocolate mousse without eggs

The words chantilly cream conjure up images of fresh strawberries, ice cream, and airy desserts. Chantilly is a kind of foam, or mousse, made by whipping cream in a chilled bowl. When the whisk is guided in a circular motion, through a vertical plane, its wire loops steadily introduce air bubbles in the cream that are stabilized by the molecules of the casein (a protein) and by the crystallization of the fatty droplets. This crystallization takes place at a low temperature, which is why the...

How to introduce chocolate into all kinds of pastry

At christmas and on new year's eve, chocolate is obligatory. But in what form Chocolate puff pastry, perhaps Chocoholics know that chocolate contains cocoa butter, and they would like nothing better than to be able to substitute it for ordinary butter in puff pastry. But they also know that the hardness of chocolate stands in their way. A few simple observations about state transitions will make it possible to solve this problem and to adapt the majority of classic recipes for pastry to new...

Beef marinates better in red wine than in white wine

It is said that fish must be cooked in white wine but that red wine should be used to marinate and cook tough meats in order to tenderize them. It is also said that parsley must not be used if the marinating process lasts more than two days and that one should not roast marinated meats because roasting dries them out. How far should we credit these familiar dictums Japanese physical chemists recently provided partial corroboration. Experiments conducted some twenty years ago in France, at the...