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  #11  
Old 10-02-2016, 01:49 PM
JaredS JaredS is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug D. View Post
For reference. In parentheses are the concentrations of hydrogen ions relative to deionized water. Note that it is exponential, not linear.

pH
7 Pure (deionized) water (0)
6 Milk (10)
5 Black coffee (100)
4 Tomato juice (1,000)
3 Orange juice (10,000)
2 Lemon juice, vinegar (100,000)
1 Stomach (hydrochloric) acid (1,000,000)
0 Battery acid (10,000,000)
There aren't actually any hydrogen ions in aqueous solution. The correct ion is hydronium. Also, pH 7 would be a relative 1, not 0.

A pH of 6 is higher than I expect for tomato based stews. Litmus paper is generally good only for a rough estimate of pH, particularly when used in a staining mixture like chili. I think it unlikely for the pH of anyone's chili to be 6 or higher. I have, however, seen beans and tomato sauce reportedly with a pH of 5.5-5.8. Hilditch, do you include beans in chili?

The pKa of citric acid (major acid in tomatoes) is about 3.5, and the pH of most tomatoes based products is 4.0 - 5.0. Citric acid won't be lost in evaporation and is thermally stable well above the boiling point of water. The only reasonable way to reduce the pH of a tomatoes based stew to 6 would be addition of a base to neutralize it. Most foods tend to be acidic, but something like beans could potentially increase pH a bit.
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  #12  
Old 10-02-2016, 03:03 PM
W. Hilditch W. Hilditch is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

First i should not write about food acidity with a soil report sitting under my nose. It said the soil had a ph of 7 and it should be 6 for fescue. 7 is neutral, not 6.

Second, my litmus paper is many years old and cost me about a buck. It says my lemon juice and cider vinegar are 3ís so my 6 may be a bit high too. It works as a relative guide for me as I can detect some effect on the seasoning with a long cook of just yellow onions to get them golden. My paper says they are a 5, but are probably really a 4. The comfort line is when this paper shows a 6.

Yes, each 3 qt. batch includes 1 can of drained red kidney beans. I think itís a Southern thing to get one more serving and it doesnít hurt the chili.

Hilditch
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  #13  
Old 10-02-2016, 03:37 PM
JaredS JaredS is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

Some would say inclusion of beans in chili is blasphemy. I'm not one of them. I always do as well, though I always call them "chili beans" at that point. Texans will soon be here to lynch us, H.
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  #14  
Old 10-02-2016, 04:02 PM
EricC EricC is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

Haha I'd agree with that statement - Texas-style chili has no beans, and that's how I make mine. But I have no problem with people putting beans in their chili, as long as they don't try to call it Texas-style...

My chili also contains tomatoes and this acidity thing in CI is of interest. Has anyone tried adding a little baking soda to raise the pH to a more neutral level, and did it affect the flavor quality of the results?
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  #15  
Old 10-02-2016, 08:16 PM
JMoss JMoss is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

As a fifth generation Texan I can affirm the separation of beans from the chili. I am not sure why, but I grew up with pinto beans and white rice in separate bowls, available to add to the chili. Which I always did (and still do) add to the chili.

I can tell you for a fact that at the Houston Rodeo and Livestock Show Chili Cook Off you will be disqualified if you have beans in your chili. Go figure. I add them just before the jalapenos and chopped onions every time I eat chili.

The right way is the way YOU like it.

Jack
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  #16  
Old 10-02-2016, 11:03 PM
JaredS JaredS is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

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Originally Posted by EricC View Post
Haha I'd agree with that statement - Texas-style chili has no beans, and that's how I make mine. But I have no problem with people putting beans in their chili, as long as they don't try to call it Texas-style...

My chili also contains tomatoes and this acidity thing in CI is of interest. Has anyone tried adding a little baking soda to raise the pH to a more neutral level, and did it affect the flavor quality of the results?
Well, it would make the chili bubbly.... Besides that, acidity is used as an ingredient because our tastes have evolved in such a way as to encourage us to eat fruits and other acidic items which are healthy foods. Furthermore, acidic foods provide a chemical environment in which our taste receptors work better. I would bet that inclusion of enough baking soda to neutralize the acidity of the chili would lead to a bland tasting chili that no amount of salt could make right.

As a side note, this is one of the reasons to add salt to any bread recipe that uses baking soda or baking powder. Both lead to a nearly neutral final product and the salt adds the ion content that allows our taste buds to do thing things they do.
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  #17  
Old 10-03-2016, 12:31 AM
EricC EricC is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

Yes, I agree, acidity is part of balancing the flavor profile, which is why I asked if anybody's tried it and what the effect was.

But you can add acidity back later, with vinegar or wine for example, which would have its own effect of flavor...

I know, I'm going off the rails here - when I cook my chili I put in the ingredients and cook them (more or less). But I've never done chili in a cast iron pot; my chili does heavily rely upon blended dried chiles like in the main site recipe but it also includes tomatoes, so I'm just thinking experimentally and wondering if anyone has actually tried these ideas, and how they worked...
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  #18  
Old 10-03-2016, 01:15 AM
W. Hilditch W. Hilditch is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

Eric, when asked who makes the best chili most of us here say; Me. I donít want to mess with my chili or try to trick it just so I can cook it in CI. Iím lucky that the recipe chosen does not eat the seasoning. If it did it would quickly go back to SS or enamel before anything would be changed.

If one wanted to decrease the acidity of a recipe to use seasoned CI the addition of meat, fat, butter, cheese or even water should get the recipe to acceptable levels. Leave the Rolaids and the lime out.

Hilditch
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  #19  
Old 10-03-2016, 10:06 AM
EricC EricC is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

Good point. I especially like the "who makes the best chili" observation. My recipe, I've spent 20 years refining it and I agree, I'd rather keep doing what's been working than change it just to cook in CI.

But at the same time, I'm not above a little experimentation...
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  #20  
Old 10-07-2016, 08:08 PM
Jay W Jay W is offline
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Default Re: Chili and CI

I made chili in my #9 Griswold DO last weekend and have been doing so since I got it a couple years ago. I havent had any issues with it.
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