SCIENCE: Materials Change in Cooking! - Sallins National School

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SCIENCE: Materials Change in Cooking!

Cooking Together

Science & Cooking

Cooking pancakes is an example of a chemical change:
The pancake batter "changes" from a liquid to a solid when heated on the pan.

Follow along with our step by step slide show to see the science at work.

Each ingredient was separate at the start.
We mixed the wet & dry ingredients to form a batter.

When heated, the batter changes.
Some common attributes of a chemical change are:

  •       Colour changes: our pancakes turned golden brown when cooked.

  •       Energy is released: steam rose off the batter.

  •       Odour changes: As the batter cooked there was a new smell. It was lovely! Our friends came to see!!

  •       Not easily reversed: We cannot change back to batter!

  •       Gases are present: bubbles appeared in the batter as the pancakes were heated.

The cooked pancakes tasted great!

Making pancakes can be great fun with this simple recipe. To make them healthier avoid adding sugar to the pancake mix and instead add a sweet topping like fresh fruit.

Ingredients - Serves 6

100g of plain flour
2 medium eggs
300ml  of milk
1 teaspoon of sunflower oil


Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl, make a well in the centre and then add the beaten eggs
Use a balloon whisk to beat the eggs into the flour and gradually whisk in the milk until just smooth
Brush a non-stick medium frying pan with the oil and when very hot pour in about 3 tablespoons of the batter
Quickly tilt the pan from side to side to form a thick layer of batter and cook for one minute
Flip the pancake over with a spatula and cook until the underside is slightly golden
Continue with the rest of the batter, recoating the pan with oil when required


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