Browning of Foods

Browning Of Foods

Browning, also called the Maillard reaction, changes the color of food which additionally adds to the flavor of the food. If you’ve seen recipes using that caramelize onions and meat, this is why.

The Maillard Reaction is a chemical reaction between reducing sugars and amino acids caused by heat. This reaction browns the food, giving it additional flavor. The Maillard reaction is an example of non-enzymatic browning which occurs in high temperatures, which is why recipes that brown foods typically use high temperatures for the food to cook in.

The carbonyl in the sugar reacts to the nucleophilic amino group in proteins, which is the cause of the new flavors and colors that are developed. 

Let's use Brown butter as an example!

Butter is one of the most incredible (and unhealthy, oops!) ingredients when it comes to baking. It gives the baked goods a tender, melt in your mouth flavor that no other ingredient can replicate. For example; chocolate chip cookies. The perfect chocolate chip cookies always use  butter and if you’ve substituted it before, you’d know that there’s really nothing that comes close to the cookies that use butter. 

And even though butter is wonderful as is, brown butter is a complete game changer. If you’ve tried brown butter cookies, you’d know exactly what I’m talking about! (if you haven’t had brown butter cookies yet, it is a must try) As the butter melts, the milk solids will break down into smaller molecules and brown, giving it an almost nutty, toffee like taste. 

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