A Dash of Science

June 7, 2012

Eva Gusnowski

I realized once I started taking more and more science classes that the following holds true:

Biochemistry = (Biology/Chemistry) + Biology - Fun

Chemistry = Biology + Math

Math = Physics

Physics = the Death of Me

But Science = Cooking?  That's something new.

A video published on the Science Daily website has a biochemist explaining just is cooking just science?

But when you think about it, it is true.  The example they use in the video and article explains how when you're cooking asparagus, you want to heat them up just long enough to cause the cells to pop open, causing the asparagus to turn that beautiful and appetizing bright green.  (Now as for the smell of your pee afterwards, that's a whole other story for a future episode).  And we've all heard about irreversible chemical reactions, the proverbial example used being the cooking of an egg.  Once it turns white, there ain't no going back.  Reversible reactions are like melting butter, because it can be re-solidified again due to a change in physical state.  (Wow, did I just pull that out after 8 years out of chemistry class? I think so...)



And anyone who has worked in a research lab knows that when you're making agar plates or setting up a PCR, you're adding ingredients in a pre-ordered arrangement in set volumes.  If you don't cook it long enough in the autoclave, you can't use it, but don't cook it for too long either, or you'll burn it all to hell and have to start over again.  And yes, you can burn agar...multiple times.



So the next time you're cooking, take joy in the fact that you are doing science, because after all, now you know that cooking = science.  But physics still = the death of me.  There's no changing that one.



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