How does the ingredient you experimented with affect the food's overall characteristics?
When experimenting with baking soda and baking powder it was fairly obvious that they were two very different brownies after getting my end products. From the looks, to the taste, to texture, they were noticeably different from each other. Even just by feeling baking soda and baking powder you can easily get an understanding of which one is which. Baking powder, as it says in the name, is a powder that is very soft whereas baking soda is a more grainy and slightly rougher component. When asking the question, "Why do we use baking soda for some recipes and baking powder for others?", I was looking at it as "Which leavener is better than the other?" but this question wasn't exactly answered from the experiment I conducted. I received the answers most get with trial and error. With this being said, even just by viewing the characteristics of the two brownies, you could tell that one batch was very different and was not baking right.
After receiving my results the difference in the brownies was fairly recognizable. The first batch which was made with baking powder. Since I baked these ones correctly, having both a base and an in within the leavener causing carbon dioxide to be created when water and heat were added, the first batch was a lot more appealing to the eye. "Batch A" looked like more normal brownies. They were a medium color brown and measured roughly 1.5 inches on the sides and a little more than half an inch in the center. Whereas "Brownie B" wasn’t as appealing. They were very dark, very thin and very deflated. They measured about 2 inches on the side and almost exactly a quarter of an inch in the middle. This is because I baked this one incorrectly. As I mention in my recipe card, what I found out about baking soda and baking powder was that they are made up of different things. One is only a base, which is the baking soda, whereas one is made up of a base and an acid, this being baking powder. They both tasted fairly salty but "Brownie A" was clearly the fluffiest brownie and overall the better tasting brownie.
In what way(s) are cooking and doing science similar and in what way(s) are they different? How are a cooking and a food scientist similar or different?
Conducting a science experiment and cooking both require a lot of the same skills such as, creating a sterilized and controlled environment, making accurate measurements and following instructions. Another common factor is the act of trial and error. Sometimes in order to perfect a recipe or to see what variables may change the overall project, you must use trial and error. Science and cooking also often times involve some of the same “ingredients” and supplies and can also sometimes have the same reaction or product as one another. For example, baking soda when mixed with vinegar can be used in a science project to create a model volcano but it is also used as a leavener in baked goods like brownies. When thinking about the similarities of a cook and a food scientist, the only similarity I could come up with is that they take ingredients and/or substances and make them react with something to create something new.
With all of this being said there are a couple of differences between cooking and science as well. For example, a lab looks a lot different than a kitchen. One big reason they look so different is that scientists and cooks have different desires for their final product. When a cook is creating something they are combing ingredients to try and make the end product taste good and look visually appealing. When a scientist is combing things they are doing it in hopes that they learn new things from their creation. They are also different because food scientists may also look at the calories and nutritional aspects of a specific food while a cook is looking at flavor combinations.
The video below is placed here in hope that you as views will get a better and possibly more clear explanation on the difference between baking soda and baking powder. (I did not make this video I only found it with doing research)
Recycling Project Description
The overall project we created for this unit was an art piece created by all three of us that entails four different messages that are all very crucial to help save our planet. The art piece we created includes scrap wood we found at our school, recycled paper, paint made of various compost items, and recycled plastic bags. Our four different messages we wanted was the importance of reducing, reusing, recycling and composting. Did you know that each year, an estimated 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags are consumed worldwide and that for every 200 plastic bags an individual uses only one of them gets recycled. We as individuals can reduce the amount of plastic bags we waist by using reusable bags instead. This is just one of the many things we can reduce to help make our Earth a happier place. A huge part of our idea for this project was the idea of making something as simple as paint to symbolize something that could really help improve our environment, this being compost. Compost reduces methane which is a greenhouse gas, it improves soil quality; food grown in composted soil has shown to contain more nutrients and be more beneficial to eat and composted soil reduces the amount of water consumed by plants so, in the long run, it helps save money. By including the scrap wood as our base, we wanted to use that as our way of including the importance of reusing. By reusing simple things like old newspaper for wrapping paper to reduce the amount of cutting down trees or by reusing torn fabrics to make a new blanket, by doing simple tasks like this it not only helps reduce the making of certain items which can reduce other things but it can also help us to become more aware of how we are treating our earth and help us to appreciate it more. The final and probably most important piece is recycling. Recycling is the process of converting waste materials into new materials and objects. We recycle to reduce pollution in the world when we recycle, it means that we aren’t creating more waste. Our hopes for this project is that it makes a difference in our community by having members of our community see and understand why we made the art piece and that they will take the information we give them and put their own personal ideas to use to start acting on these four main points and slowly start contributing to help save our planet!
How does the chemical composition and structure of a substance determine its properties with regard to its use, capacity for reuse, and capacity for recycling?
By using things that are made up of items that are biodegradable, it helps make our world cleaner, causes less pollution and by reusing materials slowly cleaning up the world one step at a time. Many don't use items that are not biodegradable and that don't decompose. One of the things that our project project very well was the over use of plastic bags. There are many different reasons why we should decrease the amount of plastic bags we use for many reasons. For instance plastic bags clog up landfills and water drainage systems, they harm wildlife, and they contaminate bodies of water. Worst they are not biodegradable. By using reusable bags made of things like hemp and other items decrease the consumption of normal plastic bags which in the long run if we all used reusable bags, the amount of plastic bags would decrease causing less pollution and less harm to our environment. In one year the US goes through 380 billion plastic bags each year and to compete with plastic according to reusethisbag.com, and according to earthier.gizmodo.com regular cotton bags would need to be reused 7,100 times, 20,000 times for organic cotton, and paper bags would’ve needed to be used 43 times to compete. Overall if things were more commonly made by recycled objects or if things were recycled more our environment would be a lot cleaner.
How do the choices we make as consumers (purchasing, use, reuse, recycling, and discarding of materials) impact our local community and environment, and the global community and environment?
We as individuals have a huge impact on the world. Even though you are just one person, you affect the world in many ways. If you begin recycling, reusing materials and buying from people that promote those things, then you are helping change our environment one step at a time. For instance an the average American family throws away 6 trees worth of paper according to reusethisbag.com. So when we as individuals start to change the way we do things and the way we treat our Earth and if we begin telling others how bad things are for the environment or how simple actions can really help change the environment than we will all slowly start to change for the better.
Reflecting back to how I thought I did at exhibition, how well I met the requirements of this project and how much I took away from this project makes me really begin to think about how much more I wish my group members and I would have done for this project. Although my group had a very creative and cool idea for this project there were many flaws with the overall product. The first problem being time. For me personally I don't think that we had very much time to complete this project. We hardly had enough time to create our overall final product. We focused too much on the aesthetics of the project and not thinking about the chemistry behind it as well as not having time to truly answer the essential questions in short TEA paragraphs to show at exhibition. Another reason why I think this may have happened for me personally is because I decided to take on a bigger role for the humanities exhibition which is something I don't tend to do. I decided to be a part of the logistics team and I ended up feeling like I had too much on my plate. I felt like since I had taken on this role that I should pay more attention to the work I was trying to complete for the humanities exhibition rather then for the chemistry exhibition. I felt an incredible amount of stress all on one day because I had three different exhibitions to go to, a Spanish project due, a math quiz to take all in the same day. I really just wished that the teachers would have talked a lot more because I feel like it had a huge affect on my ability to truly meet success with this project. For me personally I think the art piece we created is really good and the description that came with it was as well but I think that we as group spent too much time on creating and not enough time researching and truly focusing on one element of chemistry. As for my exhibition skills I believe that I answered all of the questions in a professional manner and to the best of my ability and that what we created as group was not only beautiful but also extremely creative.