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Food chemistry


Coordinator: Angelic van der Aar

This theme discusses the chemical background of cooking at a molecular level.
The main subjects dealt with are: properties of bio-molecules, enzymatic reactions, Maillard and oxidation reactions, crystallization and solubility in general. In this way insight is gained into the chemical aspects of food.
The course is divided in the following themes:
1. Macromolecules
2. Food enzymology (use of enzymes) and protein chemistry
3. Caramelisation
4. Maillard reaction
5. Chocolate crystallization

Learning goals
Learning Objectives:

The students can:

  • Explain chemical properties/structure of macromolecules, the functioning of the digestive system/organs and the effects of digestive disorders

  • Describe in their own words which molecules and chemical reactions play a fundamental role in food chemistry.

  • Report on chemical reactions in relation to food and cooking, making use of scientific papers

  • Understand crystallization in food chemistry

  • Document and present results.

Final Qualifications:


  • know and understand the basic chemical reactions in relation to food and cooking

  • can document and present results.

Period: September – January
Or: February - June

Mode of instruction
Lectures, workshops

Assessment method

Blackboard will be used for communication and exchange of documents

Reading list
Will be provided

This course is part of the programme Science of Cooking. A student is required to follow all courses included in this programme.