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Cooking With Mineral Water

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I really dislike food or beverages packed in plastic, and I go to great lengths to avoid such items. However, all the bottled water that I can find around here (with one small exception) is sold in plastic bottles. I've been thinking of using certain mineral waters for cooking. A few do not have much if any mineral taste, but the are carbonated. I imagine the carbonation can be made to disappear easily enough. So, what thoughts might you have of cooking with such water?

shel
post #2 of 11
Hi Shel,
I cover this aspect in a course I give.

Carbonated water is slightly acidic (even after the bubbles are out). The acid is due to the dissolved carbon dioxide which turn into carboxylic acid.

Acidity will affect legumes. When cooking legumes acidity can/may prevent them from softening during cooking. This explains why adding baking soda to legume water will help guaranty that the beans cook up soft.

Also the dissolved minerals like calcium, magnesium and potassium could also affect the cooking/softening of legumes as well leaving them hard.

To a certain extent any starchy, cellulosic, oligosaccharide containing plant food will either require longer cooking times or leave them firm if cooked IN the water. This could be a good thing sometimes.

Steam from mineral water is the same as plain water. No affect on vegetable steaming.


This is all theory... I haven't actually tried it......................... yet.
Luc H.
I eat science everyday, do you?
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I eat science everyday, do you?
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post #3 of 11
Could try using distilled water - like what we are meant to put in our steam irons (but tap water usually goes in!). Then its just water - nothing else.

Lots cheaper than mineral water too.

Just a thought.

DC
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
All the distilled water here comes in plastic containers ... unacceptable.

acb
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Luc ... your comments help quite a bit, and I will definitely cook up something using mineral water. Should be a fun and interesting experiment.

scb
post #6 of 11
Are you saying that if I put some Arm n Hammer in my bean soup that it will save me the time of soaking the beans over night?

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #7 of 11
I spent a week in a San Diego suburb many years ago. The water was horrible. Mineralized and undrinkable. Everything cooked in it tasted bad.

Bottled mineral water tastes better than that tap water but I wouldn't hold out much hope for food cooked in it.

Phil
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #8 of 11
No...
For beans soaking is a must (but I know some do not soak with good results apparently). Adding baking soda (1 tsp) in the water (no salt, nor acid) will help cook the beans faster and tender.

Luc H.
I eat science everyday, do you?
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I eat science everyday, do you?
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post #9 of 11
Have you considered purchasing a reverse osmosis water filter for the home?

The one I installed in the kitchen has a reservoir large enough to handle cooking soup/stock in my 20 quart pot.

Or am I missing the point completely, and you are looking for the flavor of naturally occurring trace minerals and salts, and the particular PH that happens in some tap? (Thinking NY pizza dough/ English beer)

I am definitely an amateur when it comes to water and food, however, I know a thing or two about water purification. IMHO it is not worth it in exploring tap water, since nearly all are tainted with chlorine. Better off filtering your own, and on top of that--no need to worry about plastic leaching off from your overpriced plastic water bottles.




Good luck if you live where they Fluoridate water! That stuff may be the most toxic poison to man in existence! Seriously, the safety precautions for fluoride piping remind me of dealing with nuclear work--getting off topic now...
post #10 of 11
I don't ever soak the beans. I usually pressure cook them and it's very quick.
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #11 of 11

For the question of baking soda in beans, i know it will make them cook faster, it also works to make fresh vegetables like string beans and artichokes stay green, but what i also know is it's not good from the nutritional point of view - from what i always heard, it makes the vegetable lose more nutrients into the water. 

 

I'm not sure why you would want to use mineral water, shel.  I would think mineral water would have more minerals so it would leave more limescale on the pots.  Is the water where you live so bad? 

I stayed overnight in a place outside Rome once, where they bottle the water that comes from the springs there, and it was bizarre - the faucets were all full of limescale, the chrome peeled off, and the water came out of the faucets with bubbles in it (no co2 added!)  (Most of the good mineral water here, ferarelle, st agata, nepi, have no added CO2, because it comes out already bubbly.)

I can't imagine it would be better for cooking.  In fact, some people have demineralizers in their homes. 

 

and for a funny video on water take a look at this  http://www.google.it/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&ved=0CDYQtwIwAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DNqXFrs6quvE&ei=JgN6UvD1D8TesgbdkIGoBA&usg=AFQjCNFBObYc13cVfIMHrJmPGFmIcINW5Q&sig2=jrMu8nW7L5KzVwIihP9vuA&bvm=bv.55980276,d.Yms

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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