• What is Culinary Science?
  • What is Culinary Science?
  • What is Culinary Science?
  • What is Culinary Science?

The condition of taking each of the nutrients required for the growth, regeneration and functioning of the body in sufficient quantities and using them appropriately in the body is explained by the phrase "adequate and balanced nutrition". If these nutrients are not taken at the..

What is Culinary Science?
"Murat Cakir"
Culinary Science represents nutrition, diet and health. Today, people should not be fed with certain foods for various reasons. For example, people with cardiovascular disease should not be fed foods containing animal fats. While kitchen staff had to deal with the taste, texture and appearance of the food while creating the menus; Nowadays, the nutritional values ​​of the foods they serve should not be ignored. They should also take into account the health conditions of consumers.
Dozens of chemical reactions take place during the cooking process. In order to understand these reactions that take place during this process, we need to know the invisible atoms and molecules that make up the substances in the world. There are (Culinary Science) more than a hundred chemical elements on Earth, and these elements interact with each other to form more compounds. Food consists of four basic molecules: water, proteins, carbohydrates and fats. 
The behavior of these molecules is based on a few simple chemical principles. If we know that the mobility of molecules increases in a heated substance, effective molecular collisions occur, and as a result, molecules disperse and form new molecules, we will be very close to understanding how a boiled egg hardens and becomes delicious.26
In this section, as food science, these reactions that occur during cooking will be briefly mentioned and information about these molecules that make up food will be given.
Nutrient Basics
Nutrition is the process by which living things take and use the nutrients and nutrients necessary for their development and survival from the external environment.27
The condition of taking each of the nutrients required for the growth, regeneration and functioning of the body in sufficient quantities and using them appropriately in the body is explained by the phrase "adequate and balanced nutrition". If these nutrients are not taken at the level of the body's need, "malnutrition" occurs because there is not enough energy and body tissues cannot be structured. If a person eats more than necessary, he takes these nutrients into the body more than necessary. These highly ingested items are harmful to health, as they accumulate as fat in the body. This situation is called “unbalanced diet”.28
In addition to the aromatic tastes of foodstuffs, kitchen workers must understand their energy and nutritional values ​​very well. Simply put, the body needs energy and nutrients to grow, stay in balance, and be maintained. Energy is obtained from carbohydrates, proteins and fats, which are found in the foods taken into the body and are the basic nutritional building blocks. In addition to these, vitamins, water and minerals in foods are substances that do not contain energy and are necessary for the continuity of the body. (you  can contact us to get  gastronomy consultancy  on this subject )
• Carbohydrates
The main function of carbohydrates is to create energy. 50-60% of the energy required for the body is obtained from carbohydrates.29 It is the most suitable energy source for heavy body movements. There are two types of carbohydrates, simple and complex. simple carbohydrates; They are found in fruits, dairy products, and sugars. Complex carbohydrates are found in cereals, bread, and vegetables. Since excess carbohydrates taken into the body are converted into fat and stored, it should not be consumed excessively by people who are prone to obesity.
They are nutrients that are necessary for the body to maintain its vitality. Therefore, a body without protein cannot grow and form. The building blocks of proteins are amino acids. The body cannot produce some amino acids itself. Therefore, the body should be fed daily with foods containing these amino acids.30 Briefly; The daily protein requirement must be met in order for the body to perform vital events such as blood circulation, respiration and digestion. Protein sources to the body; they are taken from meat, fish, poultry and cereals, nuts, vegetables.
• Oils
Fats are the most economical energy sources. Fats provide more than twice the calories of the same amount of carbohydrates and proteins. Fats are the body's energy store. The energy taken in excess of the need is stored as fat in the body and is converted into energy by the body when needed. In addition, cholesterol is a fat-related substance and is only found in fats of animal origin. Cholesterol should be in a certain amount in the body, but when it is excessive in the body, it causes heart and vascular diseases. For this reason, animal fats should not be consumed in large quantities. Fat is found in certain proportions in all plant and animal origin foods.
• Vitamins and Minerals Vitamins, such as nutrients, cannot be produced in the body and are therefore taken from outside with food. Living things take an important place in their life processes. Vitamins are not used as an energy source or building material in the body like nutrients; but by acting as a catalyst in the metabolism processes, they enable the nutrients to be broken down and used in the body.32 On the other hand, minerals are inorganic compounds necessary for the body to stay healthy.
Each of the minerals has a separate role in the body's work. Normal bones and teeth; balancing body fluids; nervous system; They play an important role in various vital events such as the regular functioning of muscles and organs. Vitamins and minerals can be obtained from a variety of foods. There is no food that can provide the minerals and vitamins that the body needs on its own; Therefore, a balanced diet is essential for the mineral and vitamin needs of the body.
• This
Water is more important than food in order to sustain vital activities. Digestion, absorption, transport of nutrients, transport of waste materials, provision of body temperature are all thanks to the water in the body. Human metabolism cannot function without water; Therefore, our daily water needs must be met correctly.
Culinary Chemistry
Dozens of chemical reactions occur during the cooking process. If kitchen workers can understand the basics of these events while they are cooking, it will be easier for them to intervene in any adverse events that occur during cooking. Also, understanding what's going on while the cooking is taking place creates a conscious community of kitchen workers. In this section, the scientific aspect of the cooking process will be examined by mentioning the chemical events that occur during cooking.
• Heat transfer
Cooking is the process of heating food and making it ready to eat. When the food is cooked; changes occur in taste, texture, aroma, color and nutritional values.33 To cook food, we transfer the energy emitted from a heat source to the food we cook.
• Caramelization, Maillard Reactions, Gelatinization We have seen in the previous section that carbohydrates are in different forms and each form shows different reactions when exposed to heat.34 We will focus on sugar and starch from these carbohydrates. When sugar is exposed to heat, it first melts and becomes a thick syrup. When the temperature increases, the color of this sugar syrup changes from light yellow to brown. This process is called caramelization. 
During this process, besides the color change, the rich and characteristic taste of caramel is revealed. When sugar is heated, the bonds of the molecules are broken and hundreds of new molecules are formed; some of these small aromatic molecules give the characteristic sweet, bitter and sour taste of caramel; the other majority only change its color to form the color of caramel.35 The most common technique of making caramel is to add a little water to white sugar and expose it to heat. The reason we add water is to protect the sugar from high heat and prevent it from burning.
If we add milk or cream instead of water when we are going to caramelize sugar, since these foods contain protein and amino acids, the sugar will react with amino acids to form more complex and aromatic compounds and caramelization will take place. These reactions are called “maillard reactions”. 36 During Maillard reactions, carbohydrate molecules react with amino acids to form unstable compounds, then these unstable structures form hundreds of compounds in various forms, resulting in aromatic flavors.
Starch is a complex carbohydrate and is highly thickening of liquids. If starch is added to water or a different liquid and exposed to heat, each starch granule absorbs a certain amount of water and swells. This process is called gelatinization.37
• The Function of Fats in Cooking
During the cooking process, oils enter into hundreds of reactions with the cooked food; they allow it to soften, moisten, and have a crispy exterior. Oils have an important place in culinary science and they prevent the cooked food from sticking and make it brighter and more delicious. Oils can be brought to very high temperatures without boiling. In this way, they allow the food to be fried very quickly and turn golden yellow.38 On the other hand, the molecular structures of the oils that stay at high temperatures for a long time deteriorate and they start to taste bitter.
• The Importance of Water in Cooking
Most foodstuffs consist of water. 95% of vegetables and fruits, 75% of raw meat consists of water. Water is a very strong solvent. Many vitamins, minerals and flavoring substances are easily dissolved in water.39 Water is used in the preparation of many dishes. The acidity of the water used affects the taste, smell, structure and nutritional value of the food. (You can contact us  to get  restaurant consultancy on this subject  ) 
• Shaping Emissions
Under normal conditions, water molecules and oil molecules do not mix with each other. When we put these two liquids in a bowl and whisk them, they mix with each other for a certain time in an unstable structure. This situation is called emulsion. Emission consists of two parts: continuous and diffuse parts. While the oil is the dispersed part, the water is the continuous part. The oil stays in drops in the water and this is temporary. We can extend this temporary period with natural emulsifiers such as egg yolk (lecithin protein), mustard, starch and natural gums.40
Food and Kitchen Safety
In hotel businesses, the meals should not only be good-looking, tasty or nutritious, but also the prepared foods should be safe. For this reason, necessary arrangements should be made in order to carry out kitchen work in accordance with sanitation and hygiene rules in hotel enterprises and to produce hygienically safe foods.41
For a quality and healthy production, employees should be clean and healthy, and there should be an effective cleaning and disinfection application in the enterprise.
Although the cause of food poisoning and infections that threaten the health of the customers benefiting from the hotel food and beverage services is not always revealed, it is thought that the reason is the lack of attention to the sanitation of the consumed foods during the purchasing, production and service stages. Food is transmitted from many sources, most commonly hands, raw materials, surfaces and equipment.
In food and beverage services that have significant effects on the health of customers, sanitation is very important in every area where the service is carried out and at every stage of the service so that the food served does not pose any health risks. For this reason, the kitchen, which is one of the main parts of the hotels related to food and beverage, and this food, personnel, physical space and equipment sanitation should be given due importance.
food safety
Since ancient times, people have been concerned with food quality and food safety. From the agricultural society, where production is at individual level, to today's information society, where free competition and e-commerce are intensified, states, academic institutions, non-commercial unions and consumer unions, prolonging the average life expectancy, increasing public health, making quality and safe food trade, and the consumer, honest producer and consumer union. Some standards and legal regulations have been introduced in order to protect the merchant against unfair competition.
The purpose of the food safety service; In the stages from the production to consumption of foods, in export and import, hygienic and chemical aspects are inspected, controlled and examined and processed, stored, transported, distributed, used and marketed under the most appropriate health and technical conditions, and thus various diseases that may occur in foods due to unsuitable reasons. and to prevent contamination with poisoning agents, food and value losses.
Products that comply with legal norms and rules and meet all expectations and requirements for consumers to fully meet their health and nutritional needs can be defined as “safe food”. Production practices that enable to achieve this result are also included in the scope of “food safety”. Dangers that may lead to food poisoning that threatens food safety; It is examined multidimensionally under physical, chemical and microbiological groups.42
Kitchen Safety
After ensuring food safety, kitchen safety is ensured by ensuring the safety of kitchen staff and guests. Kitchen safety can be ensured by considering the following points.43
• Health and Hygiene
The kitchen staff should have a health check at regular intervals. Food should never be handled when sick. Burnt and cut skin surfaces should be covered with a waterproof bandage. During the act of coughing or sneezing, our face should be covered with a tissue paper. In addition, hair and nail care should be done cleanly and our hands should be washed frequently.
• Fire security
In a potential fire, personnel and guests must be evacuated safely. Some of the personnel should be selected to take part in the fire. All personnel should be trained for a possible fire and also a fire drill should be applied. Fire extinguishers should be available in the living room and kitchen of the restaurant.
• Wearing a Uniform for Safety
The clothes that kitchen workers wear where they produce food protect them from potential dangers.
Hygiene and Sanitation
Hygiene and sanitation in the kitchen; It is formed by providing personnel hygiene, equipment hygiene and food hygiene.44
• Personnel Hygiene
Food poisoning is still an important health problem in many countries today. Producing foodstuffs under hygienic conditions and ensuring their consumption without disrupting the hygiene chain is an important criterion in healthy nutrition.
In the chain of processes from the production to the consumer, microorganisms transmitted from various sources can multiply rapidly under appropriate conditions, causing deterioration of sensory quality, economic losses and the emergence of food-borne diseases. Personnel hygiene constitutes one of the most important steps of the hygiene chain in this process.45
It is a moral and legal responsibility that the personnel working in the food and beverage service will try to prevent the microorganisms and other contaminating agents that cause food poisoning to mix with the food. The main way to achieve this can be achieved with care to the principles of personnel hygiene. It is not easy to eradicate bad hygienic habits in staff. Changing habits is possible with continuous training to the personnel. (You  can contact us  to get  kitchen consultancy on this subject )
• Equipment Hygiene
Providing hygienic cleaning, sanitation and food safety is the basic rule in order to prepare and produce healthy food in the kitchen. Cleaning of parts of the kitchen such as preparation, cooking, storage and dishwashing should be done without waiting. The tools, equipment, working areas and especially the kitchen used in the preparation and production phase of food production, as well as in the presentation phase, should always be kept clean. General cleaning of the kitchen should be done at least once a day.
Food Hygiene
hygiene; It is the knowledge of protecting a healthy environment and purifying it from all kinds of disease factors. All kinds of administrative, scientific and technological measures to be taken for the consumption of food in a way that does not harm health and the education of people are included in the hygiene issues. Another definition is food hygiene; In terms of human health, it is all the processes that should be done and recommended from production to consumption in order that foods do not cause any harm to human health.46
The ways of transmission of bacteria that pose great dangers to our health and their reproduction in food can be controlled. In order to prevent contamination and destroy bacteria, it is obligatory to clean food, food-related areas, equipment, personnel and toilets, and control garbage-insect-rodents.
HACCP; It consists of the initials of the English words Hazard Analysis for Critical Control Points. In Turkish; This system, which we can translate as Hazard Analysis at Critical Control Points, was developed in the 1960s with the aim of ensuring standardization in the works required to maintain hygiene and sanitation in institutions where food and beverage are processed.
The system, which is mostly used in the food industry, has been brought into a form that can be used for institutions where mass nutrition is made in recent years. The system can be briefly defined as the systematization of what kind of hazards may occur at which points during food preparation and cooking in kitchens, how these hazards will be eliminated and how control procedures will be performed.47
In order to express the concept of cuisine more clearly, it will be useful to briefly examine the businesses where these services are offered.
26 Harold Mcgee, On Food and Cooking: The science and Lore of three Kitchen, New York, Scribner, 2004, p. 4.
27 Gokdemir, supra, p. 91. 28 Sökmen, supra, p. 79. 29 Ryan, supra, p. 20.
30 Sıdıka Bulduk, Nutrition Principles and Menu Planning, Ankara, Detay Publications, 2002, p.62 31 Sökmen, supra, p. 82.
32 We found, supra, p.127
33 Ryan, supra, p. 23.
34 Ryan, ae, p. 25.
35 Mcgee, supra, p. 656. 36 Mcgee, ae, p657.
37 Ryan, supra, p. 25.
38 Ryan, ae, p. 26.
39 Ryan, ae, p.26.
40 Mcgee, supra, p.595.
41 Aktaş, Özdemir, supra, p.242.
42 R. Şaminur Topal, Risk Management System in the Food Industry: HACCP and Its Applications, Istanbul, Taç Ofset Printing, 2001, p. 23.
43 Ryan, supra, p. 33.
44 Ryan, ae, p. 28.
45 Sökmen, supra, p. 64
46 Ryan, supra, p. 30 47 Ryan, ae, p. 32
As the head chef Ahmet ÖZDEMİR, I see the source:
Mr. I sincerely thank Murat ÇAKIR for his academic work and wish him success in his professional life. It will definitely be considered as an example by those who need it in professional kitchens and the culinary community.
*** You can contact me through my contact information for more information on the subjects specified by labeling, taking into account my professional background in the above article, and to get support for Gastronomy Consulting in the titles within my Service Areas. ***
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