November 2nd, 2014
Why do chocolate biscuits taste so yummy after they’ve been dunked in tea?
“Mmmm… it turns the chocolate all warm and gooey” may be the obvious answer — but that was never going to satisfy Heston Blumenthal, the self-confessed “mad scientist” of the kitchen.
So the TV chef turned to a team from the University for a more rigorous explanation.
Heston was hooked up to the MS-NOSE mass spectrometer in the Flavour labs run by the Division of Food Sciences in the School of Biosciences to explain his reactions the aroma of a dunked biscuit. And the Nanotom, an X-ray tomography scanner, looked at changes in a dunked biscuit’s structure.
Several biscuits later, Heston revealed: “If you have chocolate on one side, if it melts a bit, you get a velvety smooth texture and then the delicious flavour as a result.”
The findings were aired on Channel 4 TV series Heston’s Fantastical Food.
Dr Ian Fisk, lecturer in food chemistry and an expert on aroma and taste, said: “This is a good example, if a little quirky, of the science that exists behind normal food.”
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