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INTRODUCTION

Effects of Varying Cooking Mediums and Treatments on Fruits and Vegetables Altering cooking mediums and using different treatments affect fruits and vegetables in a variety of ways. Major factors that must be kept in mind when cooking fruits and vegetables include minimizing vitamin and mineral losses, maximizing the development of desirable textures, and maximizing the retention of characteristic desirable flavor compounds. (Brown, 2011, p. 101). A control group for each experiment was designated and acted as the baseline for comparisons of physical and chemical changes due to different cooking processes. Whether changes in cooking methods are used for a recipe, specific patient or consumer, or product, the purpose is always to accommodate to specific needs. Additionally, each method should result in the best possible outcome for maintaining an overall high quality food product. Two different laboratory experiments were performed in order to detect changes in the fruits and vegetables. The first portion of the laboratory experiment involved preparing Red Delicious apples in four cooking mediums, which varied in concentration. During the second portion of the laboratory experiment, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and red cabbage were prepared in six variations. When preparing both the fruits and vegetables, appearance, texture, and flavor were observed. METHODS Procedures for Observing Effects of Cooking Mediums on Apples Using a Basic Recipe

1. While heating 2 c. of water on high to boiling in a saucepan, peel, core and cut two Red Delicious Apples into quarters. Once water has come to a boil, add the apple quarters and lower the heat to medium-low. The following 4 variations of apples must be prepared: a. Prepare apples according to basic recipe above. b. Prepare apples according to basic recipe, except reduce water to 1 c. and dissolve c. sugar before adding apple quarters. c. Prepare apples according to basic recipe, except reduce water to 1 c. and dissolve 1 c. sugar before adding apple quarters. d. Prepare apples according to basic recipe, except reduce water to 1 c. and dissolve 1 c. sugar substitute (Splenda). 2. Observe, evaluate and record the effects on texture, appearance, and flavor of red delicious apples cooked in water, sugar syrups, and sugar substitute solution as well as cooking time required for tenderization in Table B-1. Basic Procedures for Observing Effects of Cooking Treatments on Vegetable Pigments 1. Clean and cut fresh broccoli, carrots, red cabbage, and cauliflower into uniform pieces and divide each vegetable into 6 portions: One portion for each cooking method. 2. Use only stainless steel saucepans for cooking vegetables. 3. Cooking methods: a. Bring 1 c. water to a boil. Place one portion of vegetables in boiling water and reduce temperature to simmer. Cover after 3 minutes and cook an additional 7 minutes.

b. Place one portion of vegetables in a steam basket above 2 c. boiling water. Cover after 3 minutes of cooking and steam an additional 10 minutes. c. Bring 1 c. water to a boil. Place one portion of vegetables in boiling water and reduce temperature to simmer. Cover after 3 minutes of cooking and cook an additional 25 minutes. d. Add 1 c. water plus 2 t. cream of tartar to a pan and bring it to a boil. Place one portion of vegetables in boiling water and reduce temperature to simmer. Cover after 3 minutes of cooking and cook an additional 7 minutes. e. Add 1 c. water plus t. baking soda to a pan and bring it to a boil. Place one portion of vegetables in boiling water and reduce temperature to simmer. Cover after 3 minutes of cooking and cook an additional 7 minutes. f. Microwave vegetables on HIGH for 3 minutes in a small covered casserole dish with 1 T. water added. 4. After performing 6 different cooking methods on the 4 vegetable variations, drain liquid into cup and determine pH with pH paper. Evaluate results for appearance, texture, flavor, and predominant pigment in vegetables. Record results for Broccoli: Table C-1, Carrots: Table C-2, Red Cabbage: Table C-3, Cauliflower: Table C-4. RESULTS Effects of Cooking Medium on Apples When making changes in the concentration of mediums used to cook the apples, the changes were very noticeable. When cooking the apples in water only, the physical appearance was not as in tact as it was using the sugars and sweetener. Although the apples

did look moist and juicy, the overall colors changed into a golden brown shade. Cooking the apples in c. sugar and 1 c. sugar were similar in that the basic color, texture and general appeal of the apple were maintained. There were very little changes in color, if any. The difference between the two varying amounts of sugar was the sweetness of the apple. The apples cooked in 1 c. sugar were noticeably sweeter than those cooked with c. water. When cooking the apples in a solution of 1 c. of Splenda dissolved in 1 c. of water, the results were noticeable in all aspects. The cooking time had significantly decreased, the physical attributes remained very similar to the fresh cut fruit itself, but the medium resulted in a sticky, gel-like substance. Another trait of the apples cooked with Splenda was the fact that they seemed as if they were about twice as sweet as the apples prepared in the same measurements of granulated sugar and water. Effects of Cooking Treatments on Vegetable Pigments The changes that took place on the vegetables cooked with different treatments were interesting to observe. A general pattern within all variations was similarities in pH for each cooking method. Overall, when cooked in the microwave, the pH of all variations was the same when tested with the pH paper. Additionally, the texture and flavors of all four variations kept their pigments looking vibrant. The pigments of the vegetables seemed to change the most from the colors of the raw vegetables first observed versus the end product of the cooking methods, which took longer periods of time. DISCUSSION Effects of Cooking Medium on Apples

The overall results of effects that took place when changing the mediums in which the apples were cooked were expected. When adding heat, the ability for a fruit to maintain turgor is lost due to a denaturation of the cell membranes. When cooked with water and no sugar, the apples revealed a greater amount of color and texture change. Heating fruit in water results in a loss of shape due to natural sugars moving to water, and water moving into the fruit, also exposing the fruit to oxygen, which explains the color change caused by oxidative enzymatic browning. Since sugar is known as a natural preservative, they are added to aid fruits cooked in water maintain their firmness, while greatly contributing to their flavor (Brown, 2011, p. 316-319). Sugar substitutes are also used for reasons of preservation, as well as reduction in calories. Overall, the addition of sugar and sugar substitutes both help maintain the natural traits of apples as well as reduce cooking time. Effects of Treatments on Vegetable Pigments Vegetables, raw or cooked, are generally high in nutrient content. The color pigments of vegetables are used to enhance the appeal of a meal as well as hold most of the nutrients. Plant pigments are organized into three major groups: carotenoids, chlorophylls, and flavonoids. During this lab experiment, Chlorophyll was accounted for by the use of broccoli, Carotenoids was accounted for by the use of carrots, and finally Flavonoids were accounted for by the use of Red Cabbage and Cauliflower. Similar to fruits, vegetables cell membranes are affected by heat. Exposure to increased amounts of heat are broken down causing the acids and pigments that were once separated, to come in contact with each other .With pigment loss, comes nutrient loss, which is why using small amounts of water and heat produced more appealing results. Also noted were the effects of acid and alkali on each vegetable. The use of acids, such as cream of tartar, help maintain structure of the vegetable.

On the other hand, the use of alkalis, such as baking soda, help preserve the vegetable, but damage its overall texture, as seen in the lab. The texture of all four variations of vegetable were described as, mushy or soggy (Brown, 2011, p. 272-273).

TABLES
Table B-1 compares appearance, texture, flavor, and tenderizing time on red delicious apples in different cooking mediums.

Table B-1 Comparison of Effects of Cooking Medium on Apples Cooking medium Water Water + c. sugar Water + 1 c. sugar Water + 1 c. sugar substitute Appearance juicy, dull golden brown, smooth juicy, shiny, faint golden color juicy, firm, shiny, very faint color juicy, firm, shiny, very faint color, slimy Texture moist, tender, smooth moist, tender, smooth, slight natural bite firm, moist, tender sticky, firm, slight natural bite Flavor mostly sour, somewhat sweet fruity, sweet, slight sourness very sweet, fruity overwhelmingly sweet, fruity Time needed to tenderize 25 min. 20 min. 14 min. 12 min.

Table C-1 through C-4 show the effect of cooking treatment on appearance of both liquid and vegetable, pH, texture, flavor and observational explanations for C-1 Broccoli, C-2 Carrots, C-3 Red Cabbage, C-4 Cauliflower. Table C-1 Effect of Cooking Treatment on Broccoli Appearance Cooking Method Liquid Vegetable Very clear, Control Dark green slight green shade tint Faint green Steamed tint, overall Vibrant green clarity 25 min. Dull, Green/brown green/brown Cream of Tartar Brown. cloudy Baking soda Bright green Microwave No water to observe Vibrant green 6 Gray/brown One shade of green throughout 3

pH of liquid 6

Texture Soft but firm Firm, slight crunch Soft, mushy Soggy, falling apart Soupy, mushy Firm, perfect amount of bite

Flavor Pungent Strong, pungent Dull, paperlike Sour, tart, unappealing Strong Strong natural nuttiness

5.5

Explanation of observations Exposure to heat caused loss of color/nutrient Less exposure to heat, maintained quality Increased heat, greater nutrient loss Possible mistake in cooking method Breakdown of cellulose Most nutrient content still in tact

Table C-2 Effect of Cooking Treatment on Carrots Appearance Cooking Method Liquid Vegetable Control Yellow/orange Steamed colorless 25 min. Cream of Tartar Baking soda Yellow/orange Microwave none Light orange Colorless Light orange

pH of liquid 8

Texture Firm, still had crunch Firm, crunchy Soft, smooth Hard Mushy, soggy Firm, crunch

Flavor Light sweetness, slight bitterness Bitter, slightly sweet Sweet Bitter, acidic Bitter, strong, Sweet, bitter (similar to raw)

Explanation of observations Tap water caused color loss Good amount of nutrient content Too much exposure to heat Kept structure, color was lost Structure seemed to be falling apart Maintained structure, taste

Bright orange Deep orange Dull, deep orange Bright, vibrant orange Vibrant burnt orange

7 6 4 9

Table C-3 Effect of Cooking Treatment on Red Cabbage Appearance Cooking Method Liquid Vegetable Control Blue/purple Darkened purple/blue Steamed Green, barely blue Deep purple Magenta/pink Baking soda Dark green, slightly blue

pH of liquid 7

Texture Slight crunch, soft Maintained crunch Soft Firm, hard crunch Mushy, soggy Softness, maintained natural crunch

Flavor True to raw flavor, bitter yet sweet Bitter Bland, bitter Acidic, bitter Bitter, sour unappealing Bitter, slight sweetness

Purple with blue tips Opaque blue/purple Pink/magenta/fuchsia Dark green/trace of blue

8 7 8

25 min. Cream of Tartar

10

Explanation of observations Most color loss of all vegetables Most color loss of all vegetables Deep purple, too much heat Had a crystallized look to them Uniform, mushy texture, vibrant-alkaline Darkest of all variations after preparation

Microwave none Dark purple 6

Table C-4 Effect of Cooking Treatment on Cauliflower Appearance Cooking Method Liquid Vegetable Control Very slight White, yellow, yellow tint opaque parts Steamed colorless White

pH of liquid 8

Texture Perfect amount of bite Firm, slightly soft, slightly rough Soft but rough Hard, firm Mushy, lumpy firm

Flavor True to raw flavor

Explanation of observations Didnt change composition much Very close to raw structure Change in structure due to increased heat exposure Color/structure maintained Darker than the rest of the variations Kept more color than any cooking method

Bitter

25 min.

Mostly clear, slight yellow Colorless Yellow

White, opaque

Bland, bitter

Cream of Tartar Baking soda

Very white Very yellow

4 9

Sour/acidy Unappealing to taste, sour Bitter, slight sweetness

Microwave none Very white 6