Edible Antifreeze

Written by Science Knowledge on 11:42 PM

Borrowing a trick from the Arctic snow fl ea could banish freezer burn.

Putting food back in the freezer after it thaws causes ice crystals to grow, imparting the unwelcome crunchy texture and mildew-like taste of freezer burn. Now food chemist Srinivasan Damodaran of the University of Wisconsin–Madison has derived edible antifreeze from papaya enzymes and gelatin. His concoction, which stunts ice-crystal growth, promises always-creamy ice cream and juicier T-bones, even after their third trip between icebox and table. While studying gelatin, Damodaran realized that its protein is similar to the one that keeps the lowly snow flea from freezing in Arctic temperatures. To isolate the molecule involved, he mixed the gelatin with papaya enzymes, which are excellent at freeing proteins from other cellular material, and separated all the protein chunks by size. Then he mixed each batch with ice cream. The final step was to subject the dessert to a series of temperature changes until he found the one that remained ice-crystal-free. Damodaran still wants to better understand how the proteins work, but a patent for the process is in the works. In a few years, ice cream with a beard of frost should be a relic.

*.* Source of Information : May 2008 Popular Science

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In its broadest sense, science (from the Latin scientia, meaning "knowledge") refers to any systematic knowledge or practice. In its more usual restricted sense, science refers to a system of acquiring knowledge based on scientific method, as well as to the organized body of knowledge gained through such research.

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