[Sca-cooks] chemical leavening

Kingstaste kingstaste at comcast.net
Thu Feb 26 06:03:46 PST 2009

> Jeez, it's a couple of authenticity cops we are, aren't we? But for  those

> who become exasperated when others natter on on listservs about  primary 
> sources, well, this is why ;-).
> Adamantius

Authenticity cops, nah.  Accuracy cops, maybe.


That's ok, gentlemen, natter on.  I have wondered about this for years, I
could never figure out how an antler gave anything like a chemical rise.  
I found this on OChef's Q&A page.  They suggest heating (not 'burning', just
'heating') releases the gas that produces the leaven. 


"Hartshorn is a leavening agent, and a precursor to the baking soda and
baking powder that everyone uses these days. Hartshorn's virtue is that it
readily breaks down into a gas when heated (causing the leavening), but
unless it escapes completely, it leaves a hint or more of the smell of
ammonia. For that reason, it is generally used only in cookie recipes where
it doesn't have to fight its way out of a deep batter."


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