Chemistry life hacks. McGuyver Meets Mendeleev in these everyday, chemistry inspired tricks to make your life a little easier, with all the evidence you need to back it up. Now let’s get started. #1 – COFFEE, CREAM AND SALT You’re buying the best roast in town, but no matter what you do, your coffee always ends up bitter. Well, chances are you’re brewing
with water that’s too hot. The hotter the water, the deeper the extraction from your beans, and the more bitter compounds end up in your brew. So we’ve got an excellent trick for you so you don’t have to worry about becoming a barista to get it right. If your coffee is too bitter, add a tiny little pinch of salt and taste a world of difference. When salt dissolves, sodium ions break off into the coffee and block bitter molecules from reaching your tongue, greatly enhancing the flavor. Don’t have salt on hand at your neighborhood coffee shop?Just keep a couple of these in your purse or wallet and you’ll do just fine. #2 – BROWN BAGGING BANANAS You’re starving for some bananas but all they had at the store was a bunch of bright green ones. Bananas can take a day or two to ripen, but here is a quick tip to get them up to standard really, really quick. Put your bananas in a paper bag and throw a couple ripe tomatoes in there. The bananas, depending on how green they were to start, will ripen twice as fast. This is because of a plant hormone called ethylene that is used to make fruits ripen faster. When you place ripe tomatoes in the bag with the bananas, the bag traps in the ethylene gas that is produced by the already ripen tomatoes, which in turn forces the bananas to ripen much faster. Also, the riper the bananas get, the more ethylene they produce. #3 – HOW TO SAVE A COOKIE You ate way too many, way too fast, passed out on the couch and left the cookies out. Now they’re rock hard, unappetizing, and spoiled your plans to spoil your diet. No problem! Here’s a little trick that’s been passed down for generations. If you put your cookies in a tin or large Ziploc bag with a piece of bread, and they will be as soft as they were when they came out of the oven. Cookies contain far more sugar than bread. Sugars are known to be hygroscopic – that is, they soak up moisture from the surrounding environment. This, along side the dense nature of cookies, allows them to absorb moisture coming from that piece of bread, keeping them nice and soft for a much longer period of time. #4 – IRON AND COKE So you didn’t feel like doing dishes after breakfast and threw your cast iron skillet into the sink. When you get home, the thing is covered in rust and you can’t bare to scrub it with a brillo pad for a half hour. Good news for you – open your fridge and grab that two liter of coke. Coke has an ingredient called phosphoric acid that is used to add a sour punch to the super sweet soft drink. Funny thing is that this chemical is also used industrially as a rust and tarnish remover! Phosphoric acid converts your typical- hard to clean, iron oxide rust into blackish ferric phosphate that can easily be scrubbed right off. Go ahead, try it for yourself. We hope you enjoyed this first volume of Chemistry Life Hacks and there’s gonna’ be plenty more to come. And if you have any tips of your own feel free to send them our way and we’ll put them into upcoming videos. And while you’re still here don’t forget to hit that there’ subscribe button.