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Introductory Seminars for First-Year Students
Chemistry in the Kitchen
Chemistry is all around us and affects every aspect of our daily lives, but all too often we overlook its benefits. This course examines the chemistry relevant to food and drink preparation, both in homes and in restaurants, which makes what we consume more pleasurable. A high-school chemistry background is assumed, but no more than that is asked of the student other than to bring to class a good appetite and a healthy curiosity.
Good cooking is more often considered an art rather than a science, but a small bit of understanding goes a long way to make the preparation and consumption of food and drink more enjoyable. The intention is to have demonstrations and tastings as a part of every class meeting. We will examine some rather familiar items in this course: eggs, dairy products, meats, breads, vegetables, pastries, and carbonated beverages. We shall playfully explore the chemistry that turns food into meals. It is hoped that those who complete this course will never look at a dining experience quite the same way as before taking this class.