The Philadelphia Science Festival partnered with the Franklin Institute and R2L restaurant and hosted: Cookie Lab, a hands-on baking class where the science behind baking chocolate chip cookies is dissected, discussed and taste-tested.
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To help explain the science in baking, nine teams of four were given the exact ingredients from the original Toll House chocolate chip cookie recipe, except one variable was changed from each recipe. This team used shortening instead of butter.
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Shanna Caster, Museum Program Supervisor at the Franklin Institute studied chemistry at Schreyer Honors College at Penn State, explains the science behind baking cookies.
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Peter Scarola, pastry chef at R2L, explains the process of baking and what to consider while combining the ingredients.
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A TED Talk video was shown explaining the science that occurs when baking cookies.
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Kristy Pucci and Carlos Costa mix together brown and white sugar while waiting for melted butter, the variable in their recipe, to be prepared.
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Melted butter is poured into the mixture of brown and white sugar.
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Kim Ciolek left, and her daughter Lauren Ciolek add chocolate chips to their recipe which included bread flour instead of baking flour.
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Cookie batter that was prepared and then refrigerated overnight is scooped onto a baking tray. The refrigeration of the dough was this batch's variable.
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As the cookies come out of the oven, many look noticeably different in color and form.
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Pastry chef, Peter Scarola explains what happens to the cookies when certain ingredients are removed or substituted for others. The end result were dozens of cookies that looked and tasted different.