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Why doesn't pure Cocoa powder dissolve when

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StClone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:10 AM
Original message
Why doesn't pure Cocoa powder dissolve when
You place a table spoon of it in a cup of water and stir, yet when you put a table spoon of water in a table spoon of Cocoa powder it does with little effort?

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Padraig18 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:13 AM
Response to Original message
1. The cocoa never actually dissolves.
It only suspends in a solution. That's why cocoa mix is made with milk and sugar, because it suspends more successfully.

:)
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StClone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:16 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Yes but why
Does it suspend readily in a small amount of liquid more easily than a large amount? :-)
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EXE619K Donating Member (717 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:25 AM
Response to Reply #1
6. hey, who says Deaner are stupid?
Ha!

:toast:
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no_hypocrisy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:15 AM
Response to Original message
2. Try this: put the cocoa in a mug/bowl and add a bit of boiling water to
it to make a paste. Add sugar and blend. Then add hot milk or other ingredients.
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StClone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:22 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. My problem is
Edited on Sat Feb-14-04 09:43 AM by StClone
I add cocoa powder to my coffee and it took me a while to figure out a way to combine the two.

Also, my daughter noticed that when she made No Bake Cookies (if you haven't tried them them they are an addiction especially for Choco-aholics) the oddity occurred,too. She uses pretty much how you describe to mix the ingredients.
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EXE619K Donating Member (717 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:24 AM
Response to Original message
5. Cocoa butter.(oily,oily)
Ya need to suspend the cocoa in an emmulsion with sugar.
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Waistdeep Donating Member (469 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:27 AM
Response to Original message
7. It's really about "wetting" and dispersing the cocoa
When you stir it into a large volume, the cocoa clumps and each clump has a dry center that is somewhat protected from further wetting by the gooey outer layer. When you mix in a small volume of water you are able to crush all the clumps into a thoroughly wet paste, which will disperse more readily.

The same sort of thing happens when you make gravy with flour.
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StClone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:32 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. I made that observation
But why do clumps with dry centers not form in the low water mix?

Something is going on with the ratio of water to cocoa particle.
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Waistdeep Donating Member (469 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. In the low water mix, you can crush them easily
When there is a lot of water, the clumps float away. When there is little volume, you are able to mash them, either directly against the container or rip them apart more easily in the higher viscosity fluid.
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StClone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 01:48 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. Could it be
Edited on Sat Feb-14-04 01:51 PM by StClone
After thinking a while I see what may happen.

The hydrogen bonding is so strong in the high water mixture wwith fewer Cocoa particles so that a shield surrounding the clumps are locked strongly in place.

When there is less water the Cocoa particles are less bound and able to allow the water to move through the mixing occurs. You think...maybe?????
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Rabrrrrrr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. Yes - it would be a mix of these ideas
With the small amount of water, you are, in essence, mixing water into the cocoa, instead of mixing cocoa into the water.

So with a small amount of water, there isn't enough to form hydrogen bonded spheres around large clumps of cocoa. And also, because one is working with a small amount and the pre-mix is basically solid, it's physically possible to shove the fork/whisk/whatever through it all to force apart any balls that might be forming. But there has to be agitation - if you just poured the water over a pile of cocoa, almost no solution would occur. They would both just sit there, like junior high kids at a dance staring in fear at each other all night across the dance floor.

Theoretically, if one had a whisk made of wires (maybe a few atoms thick) spaced a few atoms apart, one *could* get a TBSP of cocoa to dissolve utterly in even liters of water, assuming the whisk was as wide as the container so that ALL of the matter in the pot had to pass through the whisk.

Easier to just start out with a small amount of water.

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FlaGranny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 09:35 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Yes, flour does it too. But arrowroot powder and
corn starch both dissolve much more easily and both make better gravy than flour (in my opinion). I prefer the arrowroot, but it is harder to find. Natural food stores have it.
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arwalden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Feb-14-04 02:37 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. Our Safeway carries arrowroot... it does make a better sauce.
-- Allen
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