August 20, 2012
Water is fundamental to human life. Though there is some contention on just how much a healthy individual needs to drink daily, no one can argue against the need for access to potable water.
That daily allotment is also satisfied though consumption of foods; meals have varying quantities of water present alongside proteins, fats, carbohydrates, and the whole other tangle of ingredients, additives, and supporting actors teased from the concept of whole foods by “nutrition” that emerged as a divisible science in the Twentieth Century.
Water is useful in cuisine as both a cooking tool and an ingredient. Hot water boils or steams vegetables, and when the acid or salt content is kicked up, it pickles and brines fruits, veggies, eggs, and meats alike. When incorporated into foods, the exact moment water is added can have a profound effect on the resulting meal; water acts most often in mixing other ingredients or as a solvent to evenly distribute flavors and textures or release compounds otherwise bound in the walls of foodstuffs. (Think teas and infusions.)
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