150 Food Science Questions Answered
Bryan L
Bryan L

150 Food Science Questions Answered

Bryan
6+yrs experience in Food Science, Fermented Foods, Flavor Chemistry, Functional Foods, Nutraceuticals
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Hello! I'm Dr. Bryan Quoc Le and I'm here to share with you my obsession with taste and flavor! Whether we're talking about Texas-style barbecue or Taiwanese milk tea​,​ our taste buds are tantalized by tasty food. As the author of 150 Food Science Questions Answered (https://amzn.com/1646118332)​,​ I'm passionate about all things delicious. For more about me​,​ visit: http://www.bryanquocle.com Discover more daily insights about taste and flavor by subscribing below today!

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The Scent of Spoilage
Spoilage and pathogenic microorganisms produce their own characteristic odors. These can be responsible for the repulsive off-flavors of spoiled food. Pseudomonas aeruginosa - fruity 🍐 Escherichia coli - flowery 🌺 Streptococcus anginosus - butterscotch 🍬 Proteus spp - putrid​,​ rotten chicken 🦴 Staphylococcus lugdenesis - hay Yeast - bread or beer Eikenella corrodens - bleach Acinetobacter baumannii - gym socks Actinomycetes​,​ Streptomyces​,​ Nocardia spp - musty earth
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
The Taste of Water
Water is said to have no taste. But as we all know​,​ whether from the tap or from a bottle of water​,​ the source of water matters. And when it comes to taste​,​ it's tough to pinpoint what exactly are differences in water. Minerals​,​ metals​,​ plastics​,​ and pollution events all play a role in how we experience water. Qualities like metallic​,​ astringent​,​ salty​,​ cool​,​ acidic​,​ and bitter are all part of the complex taste profile of even the cleanest waters. A tidbit for makers of bottled water. 💦
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
With a Grain of Salt
Why do we love the taste of salt? Turns out that salt enhances the flavor of food by strongly suppressing bitterness. Salt is even better at suppressing bitter flavors than sugar. As one of our basic taste buds​,​ the perception of saltiness was crucial for our ancestors. Our evolving brains and nervous systems needed a fresh supply of sodium every day. Being able to taste salt in the most minute concentrations allowed ancient humans to survive even the harshest landscapes on Earth. 🧂
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
2

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Posts (73)

The Scent of Spoilage
Spoilage and pathogenic microorganisms produce their own characteristic odors. These can be responsible for the repulsive off-flavors of spoiled food. Pseudomonas aeruginosa - fruity 🍐 Escherichia coli - flowery 🌺 Streptococcus anginosus - butterscotch 🍬 Proteus spp - putrid​,​ rotten chicken 🦴 Staphylococcus lugdenesis - hay Yeast - bread or beer Eikenella corrodens - bleach Acinetobacter baumannii - gym socks Actinomycetes​,​ Streptomyces​,​ Nocardia spp - musty earth
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
The Taste of Water
Water is said to have no taste. But as we all know​,​ whether from the tap or from a bottle of water​,​ the source of water matters. And when it comes to taste​,​ it's tough to pinpoint what exactly are differences in water. Minerals​,​ metals​,​ plastics​,​ and pollution events all play a role in how we experience water. Qualities like metallic​,​ astringent​,​ salty​,​ cool​,​ acidic​,​ and bitter are all part of the complex taste profile of even the cleanest waters. A tidbit for makers of bottled water. 💦
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
With a Grain of Salt
Why do we love the taste of salt? Turns out that salt enhances the flavor of food by strongly suppressing bitterness. Salt is even better at suppressing bitter flavors than sugar. As one of our basic taste buds​,​ the perception of saltiness was crucial for our ancestors. Our evolving brains and nervous systems needed a fresh supply of sodium every day. Being able to taste salt in the most minute concentrations allowed ancient humans to survive even the harshest landscapes on Earth. 🧂
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
2
Butter Me Up
One of the most important factors in keeping butter well-preserved is the packaging. It keeps oxygen and moisture from damaging the flavors. Butter packaged in cardboard suffers far more flavor defects than butter wrapped in polyethylene. The presence of air and moisture increases the levels of peroxides​,​ free fatty acids​,​ cardboard flavor​,​ and other stale flavors. Temperature​,​ volume​,​ and packaging type are all critical for ensuring butter stays fresh during cold storage. 🧈
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
2
I Can’t Believe It’s Actually Butter
Butter manufacturers often produce butter in winter months and need to keep their product for long-term storage until it’s needed. Refrigerated stick butter can only last up to 6 months before developing rancid​,​ off-flavors. But frozen stick butter can last up to 12 months. Bulk butter in 4-kg slabs are even more resistant to oxidation​,​ lasting up to 9 months refrigerated and 18 months frozen. That’s something to keep in mind if you’re looking to sell the freshest butters in town. 🧈
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
2
Soapy Cilantro
The taste of cilantro is one of the most divisive flavors in modern cuisine. Some may be genetically predestined to hate cilantro​,​ as it emits soapy aldehydes that some individuals pick up. East Asians (21%) and Caucasians (17%) have some of the highest number of people who dislike the taste of cilantro. On the other hand​,​ individuals of African​,​ Hispanic​,​ Middle Eastern​,​ and South Asian descent had a very low proportion (4-7%) of cilantro haters. 🌿
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
1
The Savoriness of Wines
Wine relies on the fermentation of grapes and fruit juices by yeast. When the yeast die​,​ they release amino acids and nucleotides into the wine. Over time​,​ the levels of umami-rich compounds accumulate. Wines that are aged for years or produced by keeping contact with the yeast lees for some time are especially rich in glutamic acid. Umami might contribute to the smooth taste of aged wines. Not to mention pairing wines with other umami-rich foods​,​ like seafood and cheese. 🍷
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
1
Holy Guacamole
As we've all experienced​,​ avocados are very sensitive to heat or cold. Even limited heat treatment causes off-flavors and bitter compounds to form. Most off-flavors are created from fats and lipids in the avocado. That's because the enzymes responsible for browning​,​ polyphenol oxidases (PPO)​,​ are very destructive to the flesh and fats of the fruit. Inhibiting these enzymes by dropping the pH to 4.5 or below with lemon juice or vinegar is key to preserving the delicate flavor of avocados. 🥑
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
1
Salt and Cookies
Off-flavors can easily affect the quality of baked goods​,​ such as cookies and bread. 5-hydroxymethylfurfural is a compound formed from the caramelization of sugars and the Maillard reaction. It imparts an herby taste and fatty odor to foods. Adding salt (0.65%) to cookie dough increases the levels of this molecule by 75% after baking. Encapsulating the salt reduces levels down by 61%. An incredible piece of technical know-how for producers of baked goods. 🍪
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
2
Very Gouda Cheese
44-week old Gouda cheese has a more pronounced depth and savory taste than 4-week old aged Gouda. Several molecules found in Gouda induce the kokumi sensation​,​ which enhances the intensity​,​ strength​,​ and longevity of savory flavors. Major kokumi compounds found in the 44-week old Gouda include peptides Glu-Glu​,​ Glu-Met​,​ Glu-His​,​ and Glu-Ala. Kokumi taste molecules are critical for the taste of Gouda cheese. Cheesemakers should understand the impact of fermentation on these molecules. 🧀
This fact has been checked (see original research for more)
3

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Bryan L

Hello, I'm Bryan.

6+yrs experience in Food Science, Fermented Foods, Flavor Chemistry, Functional Foods, Nutraceuticals

Hi! I'm Dr. Bryan Quoc Le​,​ a PhD-level food scientist​,​ storyteller​,​ consultant​,​ and author of 150 Food Science Questions Answered (https://amzn.com/1646118332). I am…

Hi! I'm Dr. Bryan Quoc Le​,​ a PhD-level food scientist​,​ storyteller​,​ consultant​,​ and author of 150 Food Science Questions Answered (https://amzn.com/1646118332). I am…