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Old 12-05-2009, 11:29 AM   #11
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Exactly. They do not selectively remove salt. They remove liquid that is salty, but the concentration of salt does not change.
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Old 12-05-2009, 01:54 PM   #12
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If its a mix that went into the soup, you could pour some of the now too-salty liquid in the soup out and replace with (sodium free!) tomato sauce, chicken stock, or even a bit of water to dilute it more without making it too watery. Just a thought

;)
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Old 12-05-2009, 02:42 PM   #13
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So............have any of you actually tried the potato trick?
Or are you just being your normal superior sounding selves based on
the apparent logical sounding science of absorption and liquid transference?

It is sad that you so blithely dismiss what someone says, even if they attest
that they have used the method and it has worked.

So I guess I should make sure I research all suggestions offered here before
posting them.

And some wonder why this board is so much less lively than it used to be.

Yeah, I know, this post will be removed and I will get a nasty PM. That's ok, I'm
used to it.
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Old 12-05-2009, 02:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB View Post
Exactly. They do not selectively remove salt. They remove liquid that is salty, but the concentration of salt does not change.
Actually, that is not quite accurate. In a situation like that, salt "WILL" actually migrate from the area of higher concentration(soup) to that of the lower concentration(potato).....sort of like brining a turkey. Think back to your HS chemistry course and the subject of osmosis. That being said, I don't know exactly how many potatoes you might need to use or exactly how much salt would be removed. Might be a noticeable difference.....might not. I have read quite a few comments from folks over the years who have said it does work. I wonder if the folks here who discount the method have actually tried it??
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:00 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrillingFool View Post
So............have any of you actually tried the potato trick?
Or are you just being your normal superior sounding selves based on
the apparent logical sounding science of absorption and liquid transference?

It is sad that you so blithely dismiss what someone says, even if they attest
that they have used the method and it has worked.

So I guess I should make sure I research all suggestions offered here before
posting them.

And some wonder why this board is so much less lively than it used to be.

Yeah, I know, this post will be removed and I will get a nasty PM. That's ok, I'm
used to it.

This is an interesting way to deal with others who disagree with you.
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:08 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy_ View Post
Actually, that is not quite accurate. In a situation like that, salt "WILL" actually migrate from the area of higher concentration(soup) to that of the lower concentration(potato).....sort of like brining a turkey. Think back to your HS chemistry course and the subject of osmosis. That being said, I don't know exactly how many potatoes you might need to use or exactly how much salt would be removed. Might be a noticeable difference.....might not. I have read quite a few comments from folks over the years who have said it does work. I wonder if the folks here who discount the method have actually tried it??
You are absolutely right that salt migrates to the area of lower concentration however you are incorrect in the fact that it is not just the salt that is migrating. It is the salt in solution. The solution, be it water or stock or whatever, is carried into the area of less concentration as well. It is just as Uncle Bob was pointing out with the sponge example. The sponge will soak up salt and if you taste the sponge it will taste salty, but the concentration of salt in the original container has not changed at all.

Here is an interesting article writen by Robert Wolke.
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:14 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrillingFool View Post
So............have any of you actually tried the potato trick?
Or are you just being your normal superior sounding selves based on
the apparent logical sounding science of absorption and liquid transference?

It is sad that you so blithely dismiss what someone says, even if they attest
that they have used the method and it has worked.

So I guess I should make sure I research all suggestions offered here before
posting them.

And some wonder why this board is so much less lively than it used to be.

Yeah, I know, this post will be removed and I will get a nasty PM. That's ok, I'm
used to it.
For the record, yes I have tried the potato trick. Neither myself or the other people who were with me could tell the difference between the two samples.

No one told you you could not use your method. All that happened was that two different opinions were posted. No need to get upset about it. If using potato works for you then go for it. I am thrilled beyond belief it works for you. It does not work for me and when the topic comes up in a food discussion forum then I will discuss my opinion. You are free to discuss yours.
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:45 PM   #18
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GB: That is an interesting article and it seems like the science was probably pretty good. But it also demonstrates that that some times scientists get so locked up with the science that they forget commom sense.

While the specific question was to whether potatoes remove salt from soup, the underlying issue is really whether boiling potatoes can make soup "TASTE" less salty!!!

On the basis of the article you linked to, I am willing to accept that the salt content of the soup does not change. OTOH, since the question is really about how the soup tastes, the scientists failed to do the one thing that would answer that question which would have been to do a taste test of the water before and after the boiling of the potatoes. As was indicated in the article, K comes out of the potatoes and into the water and it is not unreasonable to expect that other materials leach out of the potato into the soup liquid as well. So maybe the soup is just as salty whether you boil potatoes or not; but just maybe the soup "TASTES" less salty because of what the boiled potatoes add to the soup.

Bottom line is a simple taste test will resolve the question. The scientists failed to do that and folks who have claim the soup tastes better. I am not willing to discount their testimony until I have tried it for myself!!
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:48 PM   #19
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Quote:
Think back to your HS chemistry course and the subject of osmosis.
That's a long way back...However, am I correct in saying that Osmotic flow always occurs in the direction that favors dilution. So rather than the salt entering the cells, water inside flows out into the salt solution....Then there is equilibrium..The water on the outside is just as salty as the water on the inside perhaps....

What is the "magic" in a potato that allows it to analyze the "stuff" in a liquid and only absorb salt (NaCl)???...I'm thinking it absorbs liquid...Kinda like a sponge....

For the record...I've tried it many times...It does not work!
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Old 12-05-2009, 03:56 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy_ View Post
...While the specific question was to whether potatoes remove salt from soup, the underlying issue is really whether boiling potatoes can make soup "TASTE" less salty!!!...
Being a Scientist, Dr. Wolke no doubt decided to eliminate subjectivity from his proof. Taste is subjective and imprecise, making analysis inaccurate.

For example, if you taste the "salty" soup first, then taste the "desalted" soup second, your palate may have been thrown off by the salt in the first taste. If you taste the "desalted"soup first, your palate may also be influenced by your first taste, making analysis inaccurate.

Also, let's not discount the fact that, since you really want the potato to be effective, your perceptions may be influenced by your desires.
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