The Science Behind Cooking: What Actually Makes Food Brown? - Petrosains

The Science Behind Cooking: What Actually Makes Food Brown?

Ever wonder why your meat patties in your Ramly burgers taste charred and seared? Or the GSC popcorn you just bought have toasty, cracker-like flavors? Why does your cup of Starbucks hot coffee taste robust and aromatic?

Taken from Google Images

Ever wonder why your meat patties in your Ramly burgers taste charred and seared? Or the GSC popcorn you just bought have toasty, cracker-like flavors? Why does your cup of Starbucks hot coffee taste robust and aromatic?

Has it ever crossed your mind that what made these food taste out of the world? How do these food whose original forms aren’t that appetizing become so irresistible after being cooked? Where do they get the golden-brown like colour?

Turns out, it is all due to a certain chemical reaction recognized as Maillard reaction. Maillard reaction is named after the French chemist, Louis-Camille Maillard who discovered it in 1912. In layman terms, Maillard reaction is known as the browning reaction. Basically, it is a chemical reaction between amino acids and simple sugars in food which then leads to the formation of brown colour.

A photo of Louis-Camille Maillard
(Taken from Google Images)

During the process, simultaneous chemical reactions occur when amino acids and simple sugars in the food are transformed by the heat applied. Hence, the reaction forms brown pigments in a specific way where amino acids and simple sugars are arranged in rings. These rings reflect light in a way which gives the brown colour to the food.

The diagram above demonstrates the process of Maillard reaction
(Taken from Google Images)

For Maillard reaction to occur, you need to apply high heat to the food. The heat required should be high enough (more than the boiling point of water, 100°C). High heat will dehydrate the surface and remove enough moisture to allow rapid Maillard reaction. Upon reaching more than 149°C, Maillard reaction starts to form the brown colours and emits nice aromas.

Apart from that, water should be absent as water will not get hotter than the boiling point. Hence, this explains why food fried in oil are able to brown since oil has a higher boiling than water.
In the food industry, Maillard reaction is normally used in the browning of meats for steak and gives the umami taste in fried onions. It is also widely used in roasting coffee and creating crust in baked products such as bread, pies, and cookies. The process also takes place in making malted barley and chocolate. Without Maillard reaction, our favorite French fries and chips will not have the mouth-watering golden brown color and crunchy texture.

Before trying out the Maillard reaction, do remember that raising the temperature even higher than 180 °C will lead to the start of a completely different reaction which is pyrolysis. Pyrolysis is a dangerous reaction which causes food that is charred to be bitter and cancerous.

So, the next time you dig into your food or begin cooking, say your thanks to Maillard reaction as without it, your food will never taste the same again!


COOKING TIPS!
To speed up Maillard reaction, do follow the tips below.

1. Dry the meat before cooking.
You can either dab it with a towel or air-dry the meat. Or you can salt the meat in advance for more than 45 minutes or an hour. This is because salt draws out the moisture and salty brine is reabsorbed. Hence, the meat is more tender.

This happens when meat has undergone Maillard reaction. It looks juicy and inviting
(Taken from Google Images)

2. Use fast heating
If you are running out of time, you may opt for fast heating. Use deep fryers or blowtorches to speed up the Maillard reaction.

3. Coat the food with flour
Maillard reaction requires simple sugar and starches break down in the presence of heat to simple sugar. Therefore, starches will be able to provide more materials (in this case, sugar) for the reaction to occur.

References:
Nathan (March 20,2013) The Maillard Reaction. Retrieved from http://modernistcuisine.com/2013/03/the-maillard-reaction/
Schulze,E. (April 2017) What is Maillard Reaction. Retrieved from http://www.seriouseats.com/2017/04/what-is-maillard-reaction-cooking-science.html
Wikipedia (n.d) Maillard Reaction. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maillard_reaction#Foods_and_products_with_Maillard_reactions

Shared by Celine Woon, Guest Blogger

Share

0

judi bolaslot thailand
slot gacor pkv games pkv games slot77 judi bola pkv games bandarqq robopragma slot gacor thailand slot thailand slot gacor gb777 bonus new member pkv slot77 slot hoki bonus new member mpo play slot bri slot bca slot dana slot mahjong ways slot77 slot123 bandarqq dominoqq slot triofus slot thailand pkv games bandarqq dominoqq pkv games slot triofus bandarqq bandarqq bandarqq dominoqq dominoqq pkv games pkv games pkv games pokerqq slot77 slot77 slot123 slot123 pkv games pkv games pkv games pkv games pkv games bandarqq dominoqq dominoqq dominoqq dominoqq dominoqq MPO mpo play mpo play bandarqq pkv games domino99 dominoqq bandarqq bandarqq pkv games pkv games pkv games jam hoki main slot jam hoki main slot bandarqq bandarqq
slot gacor slot777
pkv games pkv qq slot pulsa 5000 bandarqq pkv games bandarqq judi qq slot88 slot gacor toto slot slot gacor pkv games poker pulsa Situs Toto mpo slot mpo slot slot pulsa bandarqq qq online pkv games slot gacor pkv games dominoqq dominoqq pkv games pkv games pkv games akun pro kamboja slot zeus pkv games situs pkv games judi bola pkv dominoqq bandarqq slot hoki pg slot pkv games situs toto toto slot live draw hk idnslot live draw https://sac.philco.com.br/ dominoqq pkv depo 25 bonus 25 bandarqq idn poker pkv slot pulsa judi bola slot77 pkv games slot thailand rtp slot rtp slot bandarqq slot server kamboja Live Draw SGP slot demo pg soft depo 25 bonus 25 depo 25 bonus 25 dominoqq slot gacor slot88 sbobet slot server thailand slot gacor dominoqq bandarqq slot gacor slot777 pkv games dominoqq slot hoki slot server thailand slot77 slot88 judi bola slot kamboja pkv mpo slot slot kamboja slot gacor slot pulsa slot ovo bocoran admin jarwo depo 25 bonus 25 bocoran admin jarwo dominoqq slot demo idn slot slot777 pkv games idn slot rtp live slot gacor slot77 slot dana idn slot pkv games akun pro malaysia depo 25 bonus 25 mpo slot depo 25 bonus 25 depo 25 bonus 25 pkv games deposit pulsa tanpa potongan slot4d akun pro kamboja slot777 idn slot depo 25bonus 25 slot77 slot gacor hari ini pkv games bandarqq bandarqq rtp live rtp bet pkv pkv pkv games rtp bet slot thailand slot777 slot server thailand slot777 rtpbet bocoran admin jarwo slot hoki judi parlay rtp live Pkv slot gacor slot pulsa idn poker bandarqq slot gacor Slot Demo Pg Soft Slot Demo dominoqq pkv pkv games slot gacor slot gacor slot pulsa slot dana judi slot triofus https://rembangkab.go.id/haribawana/uploads/deposit-pulsa/
sbobet casino online slot online
rtp bet pkv games rtp bet Judi Bola Dominoqq rtp bet akun pro kamboja idn poker dominoqq pkv games slot gacor depo 25 bonus 25 slot gacor Judi Bola Indonesia Vs Argentina Judi Bola Indonesia Vs Argentina slot server kamboja situs toto
live draw sgp slot pulsa toto macau idn slot slot gacor slot888 slot dana slot thailand Toto88 Slot Pulsa Toto88 Toto88 Sbobet88 Situs Toto Slot4d Slot777 https://slot-gacor.casakids.com/products/situs-slot-gacor/ https://slot-gacor.disdikbud.acehtamiangkab.go.id/ https://sisfosipil.ft.uns.ac.id/assets/skripsi/ https://situs-slot-thailand.bpkd.acehtamiangkab.go.id/ https://situs-toto.bpkd.acehtamiangkab.go.id/ Slot777 https://data-macau.bpkd.acehtamiangkab.go.id/ https://akun-pro-kamboja.bpkd.acehtamiangkab.go.id/ https://akun-pro-rusia.bpkd.acehtamiangkab.go.id/ Slot Gacor https://slot-gacor.modern-twist.com/products/situs-terpercaya-2023/ https://slot-gacor.zafferanoamerica.com/products/2023-terpercaya/ https://slot-gacor2023.freedomphone.com/products/situs-gampang-menang/ https://slot-gacor.overlandjournal.com/products/gampang-menang-malam-ini/ https://slot-gacor.cliffhouse.com/products/gacor-malam-ini-2023/ https://server-thailand.modern-twist.com/products/slot-akun-pro-thailand/ https://server-thailand.zafferanoamerica.com/products/situs-thailand-maxwin/ https://server-thailand.freedomphone.com/products/akun-pro-thailand/ https://server-thailand.overlandjournal.com/products/slot-thailand-asli/ https://slot-server-thailand.cliffhouse.com/products/situs-server-thailand-asli/ https://kec-paramasan.banjarkab.go.id/products/terpercaya2023/