Skip to comments.Mystery of Unpopped Popcorn Is Discovered
Posted on 05/16/2005 2:52:41 PM PDT by Mr. Blonde
Eat your way to the bottom of almost any bag of popcorn and there they are: the rock-hard, jaw-rattling unpopped kernels known as old maids. The nuisance kernels have kept many a dentist busy, but their days could be numbered: Scientists say they now know why some popcorn kernels resist popping into puffy white globes. It's long been known that popcorn kernels must have a precise moisture level in their starchy center - about 15 percent - to explode. But Purdue University researchers found the key to a kernel's explosive success lies in the composition of its hull. It turns out there is an optimal hull structure that allows kernels to explode, and leaky hulls prevent the moisture pressure buildup needed for kernels to pop. ``They're sort of like little pressure vessels that explode when the pressure reaches a certain point,'' said Bruce Hamaker, a Purdue professor of food chemistry. ``But if too much moisture escapes, it loses its ability to pop and just sits there.'' He and his associates compared the microwave popping performance of 14 Indiana-grown popcorn varieties and examined the crystalline structure of the translucent hulls of both the popped kernels and the duds. In the varieties popped, the percentage of unpopped kernels ranged from 4 percent in premium brands to 47 percent in the cheaper ones. The findings could be good news for people who savor the snack and those who grow the 17 billion quarts of popcorn sold each year in the United States.
(Excerpt) Read more at cnn.netscape.cnn.com ...
I used to wake up every morning wondering about this mystery - it took over my life. I can finally go on living now.
I remember when dad was stationed at Scott AFB - we used to go off base and buy our popcorn straight from the farmer. That, by far, was the best tasting popcorn I have ever had.
I can never get my popcorn shrimp to pop correctly.
I'm too pooped to pop.
Wait a minute...
The No Kernal Left Behind Act.
Yeah,NKLB. I like it!
I hate it when the husk remnants get caught between my teeth. If that little problem would be solved I'd go back to snacking on popcorn.
just in: still no cure for cancer.
Just buy Orville Redenbacher popcorn. Pert near every kernel pops.
I`m still waiting for the worlds greatest mystery to be solved; Why Ted Kennedy keeps getting re-elected Senator every six years for the past 40 plus years. I would say a similar mystery would be why Hitlery was elected, but then I realize she wasn`t. She used the alternative election process; "My husband is President and he can pardon whoever he wants."
Popcorn--another cool creation by God.
popcorn kernels must have a precise moisture level in their starchy center - about 15 percent
You shouldnt use both precise and about to describe a measurement.
The little husk things get stuck on my tonsils and make me gag like I have a hair in the back of my throat. And I eat it anyway and gag.
Now I'm obsessing about what happened to those single missing socks.
There's a lot of things that we eat anyways even though they make us gag like there is a hair in the back of our throat.
And I wouldn't have it any other way. :o)
Do you pop out at parties? Are you unpoopular?
Finally some news that matters.
For a popcorn junkie like me, it DOES matter. :)
I nuked some of Orville's "Old Fashion" last night and all but 4 popped.
I wanted to go out and have a T-Shirt printed.
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