Monday, 17 February 2014

Food peaks at lunch with dinner a disappointment

Lunch comprised walnut dukkah, lentils and grilled aubergine. A dukkah is an Egyptian dish, usually made from hazelnuts but apparently walnuts are an acceptable substitute. Our verdict was a pass. The walnut dukkah was quite interesting - we think it had cardamom and fenugreek in it. Steffi had crunchy bits in hers which we think were whole spices. The walnut dukkah had a sort of brown grainy consistency and the lentils were a dull yellow goo so there are no marks for artistic effect but all told a good effort.

Walnut dukkah on a bed of lentils and grilled aubergine

Dinner time brought roast vegetable frittata with garlic bread and tomato sauce to the table. This was a far more colourful affair than the dukkah and looked good on the plate but sadly it was strangely devoid of taste. The tomato sauce had a synthetic flavour to it and the frittata had some strange grey bits in it, possibly the remnants of mushrooms.

The promising looking roast vegetable frittata

Half way through - note the grey bits with a spongy texture

Work wise we appear to be doing OK. We've done a map of a slice through a granule and processed the data - it's a lot easier doing it here on the software rather than via remote access. Here's a screen shot showing the intensity of two wave numbers, c. 850 cm-1 on the left and c. 710 cm-1 on the right. Calcite has peaks at both wave numbers whilst amorphous calcium carbonate (ACC) lacks the 710 cm-1. So these maps suggest that, for the granule we looked at there is amorphous material bottom left and top right. To be honest this seems too good to be true so I'm treating this with a pinch of salt for now.
Intensity of the c. 850 cm-1 wave numberon the left (main calcium carbonate peak) and c. 710 cm-1 on the right (present in calcite but not ACC)

What we're doing now is taking a coarser resolution map of the entire granule to see if there are any other likely spots for ACC identification.

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