Monday, May 12, 2008

Dry Ice , Carbonation, Grapples, and more


This is what some food scientists do at the end of the semester...

Carbonated Fruit....
We had extra dry ice (solid carbon dioxide) yesterday and started playing with it. E. though that it would be neat to carbonate fruit.
Think about biting into a piece of fruit that has the tingly sensation of drinking soda.
I think it's similar to the infusion method that is used to make"Grapples" which are apples infused with grape aromas. I am not quite sure how the Grapples are infused but the website states that "concentrated grape flavor and pure water" is used.
*Off on a tangent, a few of us "foodie" food science students tasted Grapples at one of our "'Top Chef" socials and and decided that the apples are okay. These apples smell delicious-think Bubble Yum Grape Bubble Gum, but we really couldn't taste the grape flavor.

Back to the carbonated fruit, I started scrounging around the lab trying to find other items to subject into dry ice. We tested an apple, pear, and a spinach leaf. We placed the test subjects into a cooler filled with dry ice and let the carbon dioxide diffuse into the fruit. Dry ice sublimates (goes from solid to gas) at room temperature, so as the CO2 gas was formed, it was trapped in the cooler and entered the cells of the fruit and interacts with the water in the cells.
Anyways, I googled it and apparently other people think that carbonating fruit is cool too. Check out this blog with a chocolate carbonated banana recipe.

The team has spending countless hours on our IFT product development work that I think we're starting to become a bit loopy. :) Nah, we were just being typical food science students.

4 comments:

chou said...

Fun! I wish I'd been there. BTW, my buttercream broke too and it took 40 minutes to get the emulsion back together. I was v. annoyed. Where are the mono and di-glycerides when we need them?

just me said...

hey christy! yeah, it was kind of neat to play with the dry ice.
how'd your cake turn out? we have sta-creme in our lab...

Marc @ NoRecipes said...

I was soooo excited to find grapples a couple years back... FINALLY... I thought... someone had used this whole genetic engineering thing to engineer some fruit that tasted like something else. In my mind I was picturing blue strawberries and orange bananas that taste like creamsicles. Then I went to the website and realized it was all a scam. Have you heard of Apple Bananas? I think they are from your neck of the woods and taste a bit like apples.

just me said...

yeah, grapples are a bit disappointing.
i LOVE apple bananas! Once you eat one you'll probably stop eating regular bananas. I don't think they taste like apples, but they are much more flavorful than regular bananas. they are slightly tart and have a firmer texture than regular bananas.