myth and facts

Title : Certain foods like canned goods, eggs, meat and vegetables explode in the microwave while heating. Previous topic PreviousNext Next topic

There are certain facts about these explosions if a liquid doesn't have any microscopic seed bubbles, then it will superheat and explode. There are several common liquids that totally lack seed bubbles: canned goods, eggs, meat, and vegetables. Canned goods are boiled and then sealed. The boiling will remove all the dissolved gases, and as the food cools, the live steam condenses back into water, creating a fairly good vacuum. That's why the lid on the jar of spagetti sauce goes "poink" when you break the seal. In a vacuum, There are no seed bubbles. So Spagetti-Os and jars of apple sauce are just like the explosive coffee which has been boiled and cooled several times. They're like bombs waiting to go off. There's a possible cure: stir them first. Stir them well, whisk them up so there's lots of little bubbles mixed in. The only other cure is to stick a bunch of wooden chopsticks into the food. You need several, since unlike coffee, the food doesn't stir itself as it heats.

Eggs also explode. If you are trying to fry an egg open in a microwave, be sure to get an explosion. It seems that biological systems can adjust the amount of dissolved gases within themselves. As long as the dissolved gas is a bit lower than the natural amount, this will cause all tiny bubbles to shrink and vanish. Tiny bubbles will dissolve. This makes sense where living things are concerned. You don't want your tissues to fill with foam! Given the choice, Nature would rather make bubbles inside plants and animals slowly shrink, not slowly grow.

So eggs, meat, and vegetables are "exploding coffee" too. Unless you whisk some air into your eggs, they will tend to superheat and explode. Same with potatoes, beets, etc. At least with vegetables you can slice them thin. That gives them large surface area, and destroys any large volumes which are far from the air. Meat is the same: it can explode if overheated. Add some air by slicing it, or use a needle to poke it full of holes.

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