F / 154°C: Maillard Reactions Become Noticeable

Cooking

There are tremendous nutritional benefits to having a year-round supply of fresh fruits and vegetables. At the same time, the diet rich in fruits and vegetables is the leading cause of foodborne illness in North America because they’re fresh, and anything that touches them has the potential to contaminate. So how do you balance the potential for risk against the potential benefits? Be aware of the risks and put in place safety programs, beginning on the farm. Oxygen—are necessary for some types of bacteria to multiply. Oil creates an anaerobic environment, but by itself doesn’t provide any moisture for bacteria to grow.

Fry the crackling until it is completely puffed and there are no dark spots of unexpanded cracker dough. Remove the puffed cracklings from the oil and drain on a paper-towel-lined tray. Cooking also breaks down pectin, and as a kitchen chemistry experiment, you can capture the pectin …