Newsletter #33! Hydrocolloids!

Newsletter #33! Hydrocolloids!




Thanks for opening my newsletter!
1. What's New and food science factoids?
2. When to see me?
3. Deals! (At the farmers' market, mention you received this newsletter for 10% off!

#1: What's new?
Part 1: I yam what I yam!
(or... What's in production?)

I just finished a fresh batch of K9 Bros Sweet Potato Chews! I dehydrated 400 pounds of North Carolina Sweet Potatoes!

If, as the expression goes, you are what you eat, then "I yam what I yam!"
Sweet potato chews are a healthy source of beta-carotene, antioxidants, fiber, and slow-carbs, that cleans dogs' teeth and freshens breath. The treats are great for slightly bigger-dogs that have a slightly bigger appetite, or high-energy dogs that need something to keep 'em busy, but still deserve a yummy and filling reward!

I'm also making K9 Bros Chicken, and just finished fresh batches of Liver of Beef and Heart of Beef!

Part 2 of what's new:


I'm giving away a flag display case! You can proudly display your American Flag on the mantle.
No purchase necessary!



Part 3 of what's new (food science factoids), scroll to the very bottom since the info is very long, but I guarantee it's informative!


#2. When to see moi next?

Answer: This weekend!
 Bring yourself and your pup down for free samples!

On Saturday at Public Lands/Dick's Sporting Goods, there are a variety of cool skis and snowboards. There are deals  throughout the store, as well as clearance options all over the huge store! It's a fun place to roam and check out the newest gear, and get inspired to do activities outside!


Day 1:


Day 2:


 This weekend!

Public Lands Melville Rt 110

Jan 13th, 2024, noon to 5pm




2 Melville Rd. N.
Huntington Station, NY. 11746

 Spirit of Huntington Art Center

Jan 14th, 2024
9:00 AM - 1:00 PM 






3. Deals!

Farmers Market special: $1 off 2nd item and all additional items
10% off your first order on my website! Use coupon code "Grand opening"

Subscription direct to your door!

If you can’t come to my products, make my products come to you!

Subscribe and Save! 5% off and free shipping on qualifying orders!

Shameless plugs:

Fresh dried fruit is a weight loss cure!

(this statement that has not been substantiated by any scientific study... but no sugar added dried apples and pears can't be bad!)

No sugar added! Slow and low temperature dehydrated to preserve vitamins, antioxidants, and flavors!
(compare to other brands' apple chips which are high-temperature baked or fried in oil! Yuck!)

USA Grown fruit! Carefully dehydrated!

And the only spreadable black garlic!

1) Red Apples! (New York State grown!)

2) Red Apples with cinnamon-spice!
3) Green Apples!
4) Green Apples with cinnamon spice!
4) BLACK GARLIC (the only spreadable, more versatile, black garlic!)


K9 BROS TREATS! All natural! Arrrf!

1) Chicken: Whole meat! (no by-products!)
2) Liver of Beef
3) Heart of Beef
4) Sweet Potato




Hypothesis: I will see you this Saturday or Sunday! 😃

Null hypothesis: I will not see you this weekend 😭

Conclusion: Not sure! Let's see!

Secret website coupon! 10% off with coupon code "grand opening" and "black garlic"

20% off black garlic if you order a dozen units with coupon code "Dozen"


★  ★

☆  gourmet-magic ☆



"Greatest Hits" of Dave's Focus on Food Science:

1. Deep Dive: Black Garlic Research Links I've accumulated
2. Garlic Health Benefits
3. "Is black garlic fermented?"
4. Black Garlic Caramelization Chemistry
5. Maillard Reaction
6. Pasteurization, Methanol toxicity in Diet Soda and Alcoholic Spirits
7. I created a FUN FOOD SCIENCE 101 POSTER
9. Food Chemistry of a HANGOVER!
10. Food Dehydration teaches us about climate change: Part ONE and Part TWO
11. Vinegar is a DOUBLE fermentation
12. Salt Preservation
13. The Saponification Reaction
14. Food Chemistry BOND ENTHALPY
16. Halloween themed "food chemical SCARIES"

All previous newsletters, click here Click here to unsubscribe

Food science factoids for January, 2024
I was recently curious if Chat GPT could provide a succinct answer as to why food hydrocolloids gelatinize at different temperatures.

Chat GPT is amazing at aggregating information quite succinctly. However, the question you provide Chat GPT must be very specific to get your desired information:

For my curiousity about molecular properties of food hydrocolloids, I was too vague in my first question, but it provided a great definition and overview of food hydrocoilloids:

My question: why do food hydrocolloids solidify at different temperatures?

Chat GPT Answer:
Hydrocolloids are substances that form gels or thickened systems when they come into contact with water. The solidification or gelation of hydrocolloids at different temperatures is influenced by various factors, including the specific hydrocolloid used, its concentration, and the presence of other ingredients in the system. Here are some general reasons why food hydrocolloids may solidify at different temperatures:

1. **Type of Hydrocolloid:**
   - Different hydrocolloids have distinct chemical structures and properties. For example, some common hydrocolloids include agar, gelatin, pectin, carrageenan, and xanthan gum. Each of these hydrocolloids may have specific temperature ranges at which they gel or solidify.

2. **Concentration:**
   - The concentration of the hydrocolloid in the food system can affect its gelling properties. In some cases, increasing the concentration of a hydrocolloid can result in a higher gelation temperature.

3. **Interactions with Other Ingredients:**
   - The presence of other ingredients, such as salts, sugars, acids, or other hydrocolloids, can influence the gelation temperature. Interactions between the hydrocolloid molecules and these additional components can either enhance or inhibit gelation.

4. **pH Levels:**
   - The pH of the food system can impact the gelation temperature. Some hydrocolloids are sensitive to changes in pH, and their gelling properties may be optimized within specific pH ranges.

5. **Thermal Stability:**
   - The thermal stability of the hydrocolloid is a crucial factor. Some hydrocolloids may be stable at higher temperatures, allowing them to form gels under conditions where others may not.

6. **Hydration and Swelling:**
   - Hydrocolloids often need to hydrate and swell in the presence of water before they can form a gel. The rate at which this hydration occurs, as well as the temperature at which it is most effective, can vary among hydrocolloids.

7. **Syneresis:**
   - Some hydrocolloids may exhibit syneresis, which is the expulsion of water from a gel. This process can affect the texture and stability of the gel and may be influenced by temperature.

In summary, the solidification or gelation of food hydrocolloids at different temperatures is a complex interplay of factors related to the specific hydrocolloid, its concentration, interactions with other ingredients, pH, thermal stability, and the hydration process. The unique properties of each hydrocolloid contribute to the wide range of gelation temperatures observed in different food systems.

My 2nd, more specific question: what molecular property of food hydrocolloids affects the gelatinization?

The gelatinization of food hydrocolloids is influenced by various molecular properties, with key factors including:

    Molecular Weight: The size of the molecules in hydrocolloids can affect gelatinization. Higher molecular weight hydrocolloids may form stronger gels.

    Chain Length: The length of the polymer chains in hydrocolloids plays a role. Longer chains may contribute to better gel formation.

    Hydrophilicity: Hydrocolloids are typically hydrophilic (water-attracting). This property influences their ability to interact with water molecules, affecting gel formation.

    Ionic Strength: Some hydrocolloids are sensitive to the ionic strength of the solution. Changes in ionic strength can impact the gelatinization process.

    Temperature Sensitivity: Gelatinization often involves the application of heat. The temperature sensitivity of hydrocolloids can determine at what temperature gel formation occurs.

    Concentration: The concentration of hydrocolloids in a solution can impact gel strength and texture.

    pH: The pH of the solution can influence the charge on the hydrocolloid molecules, affecting their interaction and gel formation.

Understanding these molecular properties helps in manipulating the gelatinization process for various food applications. Different hydrocolloids may exhibit unique characteristics, making them suitable for specific culinary or industrial purposes.

It's answer was somewhat repetitive, but the first two factors: "molecule weight" and "chain length", are very informative!

If you ever want to try playing with food hydrocolloids at home, just use corn starch! If you've never used cornstarch, you're missing out!
Here's my method for experimenting with corn starch at home if you've never used corn starch for gels:

1. Using a ceramic bowl: Pour about 2 cups of water into the bowl
2. Place about 1 teaspoon of cornstarch into the water (if you have a metric scale, use about 100mL of water and 3% weight/volume of cornstarch)
3. I recommend a double-boiler method, so you will put your experiment in a pot of water to prevent the cornstarch-dispersion from scorching. The more water you use in the pot, the more the bowl will float due to buoyancy, so just a bit of water to prevent overheating the bowl is recommended to avoid the bowl from floating since you will need to keep agitating the corn starch to prevent settling of the cornstarch at the bottom of the water.
4. Keep mixing the cornstarch with a fork until the corn starch gels. You will notice the dispersion of cornstarch in water turn from cloudy white to clear almost instantaneously! (when the dispersion reaches a specific temperature, about 135F)
5. You can turn off the heat on the stove when the cornstarch has gelled. Depending on how concentrated your cornstarch dispersion is, you might not be able to even mix the glob!
6. You can add a lot of functional ingredients to give the gel various functional properties. There's A LOT of stuff on the market, such as foods, adhesives, and creams that are simply cornstarch or a similar hydrocolloid, mixed with functional ingredients.

Tip: You want to avoid adding cornstarch powder directly to hot liquids, or the cornstarch will instantly thicken into an uneven clump. It is best to premix/pre-disperse the cornstarch in water, and then pour the premix into the main mix, and agitate everything as much as possible during this process to avoid the cornstarch from clumping together.
You can maybe skip the double-boiler method and use very low heat and cut the heat quickly when the gel forms. However, you may ruin your pot with scorched cornstarch gel (and then you'll hate me) so with the double-boiler method, you'll be less likely to burn the gel.

Cornstarch is very cheap and good to play with for mastering your gelling technique, but more nutritional milled flours, generally, behave very similar to cornstarch! Enjoy your cooking and tinkering with a bit of food science aided techniques!
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