I like to think I provide answers and information (and perhaps a little amusement) here, rather than use the blog to extract information from others. However, the latter process seems to work pretty well on occasion. So....
If I remove an "ice" plug from a jar containing a weak acetic acid brine, will the concentration of acetic acid in the remaining solution go up or down? Acetic acid freezes at a higher temperature than water does, but so what? So does sodium chloride. :) Acetic acid and water seem to dissolve in each other really well, too. Assume other contaminants, especially organic ones. I assume the NaCl concentration goes up, of course, but I want the CH3COOH concentration to go up too, or at least stay level.
If you'd like more background: the situation involves a poorly-regulated refrigerator and a very large opened jar of pickles. ;) I'd like to remove the ice plug, for some reason, but don't want to reduce the concentration of salt and vinegar in the brine. I also don't want the jar to break, of course. The real long-term solution involves removing the the other organic contaminants, i.e., the preservedCucumis sativus fruits. Obviously supply exceeds demand at the moment. Such is life. Would that my problems were always this bad. :) I guess it's possible I could have another problem by over-concentrating the vinegar, but I think that's unlikely to proceed to a problematic level. Perhaps I'm wrong.
One article even used the "C word." I'm sure we'll soon have Federal legislation making illegal the snorting of dairy, dairy-like, or smells-like-some-dairy products. Then we'll have a spate of kids grinding up cheap artificially-flavored butterscotch and mainlining it. Then someone else will set up an institute to study "diacetyl's beneficial health aspects" or some such rubbish.
A few weeks ago, a friend and partner in crime on food expeditions told me she really wasn't sure what the term "molecular gastronomy" meant. I think our discussion was elicited by my use of the term in a previous post. I tried to answer the question, but couldn't say much, other than babble about science and new techniques applied to the culinary domain. I was not satisfied with my answer.
Now, after weeks of continuous study, drinking, and goat sacrifice, I've located a seminal paper (PDF, actually) on the subject: "Molecular gastronomy: a scientific look to cooking" by Hervé This. Dr. This and the late Dr. Nicholas Kurti are considered the parents of the term molecular gastronomy. The paper contains a definition of the term. (I'm guessing the paper was originally written in another language and translated to English.)
I re-learned something tonight: The amount of time you can spend away from the stove is inversely proportional to the highest temperature you've left a burner set on. If you have an attention-grabbing device in the house like a computer, it's probably more like the square of the highest temperature. It wasn't so bad as last time though: that involved molten aluminum.