Dave Mack's stupid question of the week...

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Dave Mack, Aug 3, 2006.

  1. Dave Mack

    Dave Mack Producer

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    Does water boil faster in a pot with a lid on it or not? I honestly don't know. My gf swears it does, I don't see it making much of a difference since the heat comes from the bottom.

    Anyone know? Thanks!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Eric Kahn

    Eric Kahn Guest

    It would be slightly faster with the lid as you are trapping alittle of the heat which is radiated off the top of the water, you would have to use a stop watch to see the difference as it is probably less than one minute
     
  3. Nathan*W

    Nathan*W Screenwriter

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    Ahh, but the heat also comes from the top...

    In the form of steam. As the water heats on the stove surface, the water closest to the bottom of the pot gets so hot that it converts to a gas. This gas (steam) is lighter than the liquid around it, so it rises to the surface and escapes.

    1. In a lid-less pot, the steam escapes to atmosphere and is lost.

    2. In a lidded pot pot, however, that very hot steam is contained and helps to heat the surface of the water, compounding the stovetop's heat.

    It is an easy thing to test. Measure an identical portion of water into two similar pots (one with a lid) and put them on the stove on two burners. See which one goes first.
     
  4. Jerry Almeida

    Jerry Almeida Second Unit

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    Well that won't work, everyone knows a watched pot never boils. [​IMG]
     
  5. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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  6. Brian Johnson

    Brian Johnson Supporting Actor

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    At least the thread title delivers what it promises.


    ( [​IMG] )
     
  7. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    Lemme guess, she cooks, you don't. Or else you would know.

    Variation of the covering is an alternative (often complimentary) method of heat control.

    --
    H
     
  8. Nathan_F

    Nathan_F Second Unit

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    But is the water actually reaching 212/100 faster or is it boiling faster because of a pressure buildup at a lower temp?
     
  9. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    The water reaches boiling point faster because the steam trapped below the lid heats up the water from the top rather than escaping into the room.

    The pressure is good because it means more steam (more heat to be transfered to the water) for the same volume, but it's also counter-productive (if boiling is your goal) since it increases the boiling point of the water (obviously not enough to offset the benefit).

    --
    H
     
  10. Jassen M. West

    Jassen M. West Supporting Actor

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    Would two different burners or pots be fair? One might get hotter faster. [​IMG]
     
  11. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    And then there is the matter of adding salt to the water. Not only does this add a little flavor, salt slightly raises the boiling point of the water which should make the food cook a tiny bit faster, IIRC.
     
  12. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    Correct. Yet if you're only trying to boil water, the salty water will take longer.

    --
    H
     
  13. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    A technique used by many cooks is to heat unsalted water in a covered pot until it is boiling and then add the salt (it probably makes no difference, but it does seem to be faster).

    And in the general category of boiling water, things cooked in boiling water (e.g. pasta) take longer at higher altitudes, because the water does not get as hot.
     
  14. Dave Mack

    Dave Mack Producer

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    Thanks guys, I did a little research. Believe it or not there are many webpages with titles like "How to Boil Water"...! [​IMG]
    And I do actually cook, much more that the gf, I just wasn't sure.
    [​IMG]

    And yes, I admit, stupid question. I've got a million of them!
    Here's one, if god is ALL powerful can he make a rock so large that even he can't lift it? [​IMG]

    Kinda like when Kirk says to that android, "Everything I say is a lie" which leads the android into an infinity mode when he analyzes the statement and poof!
     
  15. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    Conversely, the concept behind a pressure cooker is to heat the water hotter than normal.
     
  16. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    (without boiling. As in, have liquid water hotter than 212F).

    Obvious, but that was for Dave.

    --
    H
     
  17. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    As long as the length of time that it takes the water to boil (in the uncovered pot) doesn't exceed your GF's boiling point (when dinner is late), then you really shouldn't have to worry. [​IMG]
     
  18. nolesrule

    nolesrule Producer

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    is there a groan emoticon?
     
  19. Bryan X

    Bryan X Producer

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    What if I add Silica to the water? Will it boil faster or take longer?

    HA HA! Trick question! The Silica absorbs all of the water so there is no water to boil!
     
  20. Dave Mack

    Dave Mack Producer

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    Actually my gf's mom was like, "Put the Water on to boil!" while I was in the VERY beginning stages of making my sauce, the onions weren't even browned yet! I had to saute them and the garlic then add my soy ground (trying to be healthy!) and brown all that, then add the canned tomatoes etc. to cook down. I told her, not yet, gonna be about 40 minutes and she went through the roof!

    [​IMG]
     

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