"There's only one hard and fast rule in running: sometimes you have to run one hard and fast."

Saturday, March 31, 2012

More Food Chemistry than You'd Expect from a Running Blog

The red chocolate menace is slowly killing me.

The first thing for me to consider was the source of red color, if not using artifical dyes. Most berries, from cherries to cranberries, have anthocyanins for color and beets have betacyanin; both are red in acidic solutions, but purple in basic solutions. Purple added to chocolate does not work, so I kept a slightly acidic environment. Unfortunately, I forgot that heating table sugar in acid causes some of the sucrose to be cleaved into glucose and fructose, which keeps the solution from crystallizing and left me with more of a jam than chocolate.

What I needed was something true red and soluble in fat, rather than water. Three or four possibilities came to mind: lycopene from tomatoes or watermelon (or guava or pink grapefruit), astaxanthin from krill oil (and maybe red kelp) and iron (II) oleate, which is probably best not thought about. The krill oil was a non-starter; expensive, liquid at room temperature, slightly odd taste.

So... I went on to try to pull the red color out of tomatoes without bringing along too much of the flavor compounds or acids. My Evil Kitchen doesn't have steam distillation or centrifuging capabilities (yet), so I resorted to some very old techniques. I now have pasta sauce that smells oddly of chocolate. I have quarts of it. Quarts and quarts of slightly odd marinara.

Now it's personal [cue ominous music]. I will have red chocolate by Easter, if I have to use my own blood. Hmmmmm. Hadn't thought about heme for color. [cue very ominous music]


Alene Gone Bad said...

I think Vampire Velvet Cake sounds appropriately irreverent for Easter. I like that. Mwaaahahahaha!

Robyn said...

No good. It turns black when cooked.

Glaven Q. Heisenberg said...

I don't want to say I told you so, because I didn't. But secretly I always knew this would end in some form of anthropophagy. But even I didn't suspect auto-anthropophagy.

"Angry Parle" - Ham. I, i: "So frown'd he once when, in an angry parle,/
He smote the sledded Polacks on the ice."

That may sound mean to the Polacks, but at least he (i.e., Hamlet's Dad) didn't try to eat them.

Also? No one knows if it was the Polacks he really smote because some claim the line should read "pole-axe". So we don't know if Hamlet Sr. was smiting Poles or ice [the latter with a battle-axe on a sled).

We do know, however, that he was first engaged in an angry parle. So no one can ever say he didn't try to talk it out first.

(This was before people knew you were supposed to try to "hug it out, bitch".)

The Triathlon Rx said...