Analytical methods for molecular gastronomy
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Let us assume that science—Michael Faraday preferred the old term used by Isaac Newton, “natural philosophy”—is, in short, the activity of looking for the mechanisms of phenomena, using the “experimental method.” In this regard, any phenomenon needs an “explanation:” mountains surging upwards, the blueness of the sky, the behavior of subatomic particles… and the rise of soufflés, the softening of carrot roots during thermal processing (“cooking”) in water, or the change in color of immature pods of green beans during heating.
These last examples bring us directly to the core of “molecular gastronomy,” a scientific discipline co-created in 1988 by both the late Nicholas Kurti (1908–1988)—a former professor of physics at Oxford—and by one of us (H. This) . At that time it was observed that, although the science of food composition and the study of industrial processes were very well developed, many daily preparations were not being considered by food science. In particular, very...
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