I am asked about canning foods and this is one of my kitchen interests. Pickling and brining foods is essentially a method of “drying” food in liquid. Osmosis works to balance the concentration through the food’s membrane. If the concentration is higher on one side than the other, liquid moves by osmosis to the side with a greater concentration of dissolved salt or sugar until the two sides reach equilibrium.
So when you place fruits or vegetables in water and add a sufficient amount of salt or sugar, water actually comes out of the plant cells rather than soaking into them. The result is that the plant cells dry out by as much as 5O%, and two common examples of this technique are brining vegetables in a salt solution and candying fruits in a sugar solution. In both cases, the osmotic movement of water reduces the water content in the plant’s cells.
Categories: Life Cycles