Popping to Perfection

Scientists have uncovered why some popcorn kernels stay unpopped in the microwave.

By Emily Sohn, 00:00 AM April 24, 2005

You're at the movies. The feature's starting. You've got a soda in one hand and a bucket of popcorn in the other. Just as the opening scene begins to suck you in, you crunch down on a mouthful of popcorn, and . . . ouch! You've bitten into a hard, unpopped kernel.

"It's bothersome," says Bruce Hamaker. He's a food chemist at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. "It can chip teeth if people aren't paying attention."


Instead of just grumbling about the problem, Hamaker and...

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