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Biochemistry C&EN Food Chemistry

A guide to natural sweeteners – in C&EN

Sugars aren’t the only plant compounds you can use as sweeteners. The latest edition of Periodic Graphics in Chemical & Engineering News looks at the molecules in sweeteners from a variety of sources. View the full graphic on the C&EN site.

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Food Chemistry

The science of making porridge

Perfect porridge can be a challenge. Too lumpy, too runny, too stodgy – unpalatable porridge is a sadly common phenomenon. Here, we look at how science can provide pointers on getting porridge-making right.

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Food Chemistry

International Coffee Day: Arabica vs robusta

October 1 marks International Coffee Day. We’ve looked at various aspects of coffee chemistry on the site previously, but haven’t yet looked at the key divide between coffee beans: arabica and robusta. This graphic looks at the two types of coffee beans and some of their chemical differences.

Categories
Food Chemistry

How is decaffeinated coffee made? The chemistry of coffee decaffeination

Caffeine is a stimulant, and the world’s most widely consumed psychoactive drug. Many of us need our morning coffee to be functional, but others prefer to avoid caffeine due to its effects on sleep, restlessness, or pregnancy. Handily, chemists have come up with several ways for us to enjoy coffee without the caffeine. Here, we […]

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Food Chemistry

The chemistry of aubergine (eggplant) colour, bitterness and browning

The aubergine (or eggplant) is a fascinating fruit. And yes, you read that correctly – the aubergine is technically a fruit, not a vegetable. If you’ve ever wondered why they soak up oil like a sponge, and rapidly brown when cut, read on!

Categories
Biochemistry Food Chemistry

The chemistry of spinach: the iron myth and ‘spinach teeth’

“Spinach is a good source of iron” – a myth, but a surprisingly persistent one. The story behind the myth and the chemistry that debunks it are fascinating. Here we look at both, as well as the chemical explanation behind the ‘spinach teeth’ phenomenon.