h a l f b a k e r y
Not so much a thought experiment as a single neuron misfire.
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The countertop pressure popper is a small countertop appliance, the size of a toaster.
You pour into one opening, a small amount of popcorn, or other uncooked grain. Into another opening, you pour a bit of water.
Close and lock the lid, rendering the device completely air-tight / pressure-tight.
Turn it on, which causes the heating element to boil the water. Since the interior volume of the device is fairly small, only a small amount of water is needed to generate high pressures.
A small fan circulates the steam around the grain.
The temperature of the steam is raised to about the same temp as popcorn pops at, and the same *internal* pressure as popcorn has at the instant of popping.
The pressure and temperature are kept there until the heat and steam fully penetrate the grain being cooked... probably about a minute.
While the food is being cooked, the user fits a cloth bag over the popper's opening.
When cooking is done, the user opens a butterfly valve, which releases all of the pressure at once, causing the food being cooked (and the steam) to explode into the bag.
With this device, you can not only make popcorn, but rice crispies, puffed wheat, corn puffs, etc..
The inspiration for this idea
[goldbb, Jun 15 2009]
Now with air power!
[Letsbuildafort, Jun 15 2009]
||and the sign says: "Long haired, scary people, need not apply".
||WARNING: Correct use of this equipment may cause serious injury or death.
||Well, yes. However, your link shows a video of a chinese
gentleman making popcorn. In the video, a sealed metal pot
containing popping corn and water is heated, and then
placed at the mouth of a large cloth bag. The
aforementioned chinese gentleman then opens a butterfly
valve, which releases all of the pressure at once, causing the
food being cooked (and the steam) to explode into the bag.
||So, your invention here is the use of an electric heater in
place of a charcoal fire?
||I've seen versions of this in Chinese stores, they make great tasting rice cakes, but the pop will scare the hell out of you.
||Not just using an electric heater, but also the idea of popping/puffing other foods, things which don't normally pop.
||Hmm - yes, fair point goldbb.
||// things which don't normally pop. //