Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Peeps Experiment #2 - How to Dissolve Peeps

For those of you not interested in actually ingesting Peeps, how about dissolving them - for the sake of science, of course. The children, and I perused the ingredients list from our box of Peeps, they are mainly sugar in various forms, gelatin, and food coloring, with a little wax thrown in for good measure. We've certainly dissolved our share of sugar in water, and we learned, nearly a year ago about the protein eating enzyme in fresh pineapple, that will break down gelatin.

So, since we happened to have some fresh pineapple, and a few Peeps left in the the box after making Peeps S'mores, we thought it would be fun to see whether Peeps dissolve faster in water, or when in contact with pineapple.

The children took two Peeps, and placed one into a glass of lukewarm water, and one into a glass with pieces of pineapple core - the part we weren't going to eat, anyway (though later we added a juicier chunk of pineapple, as well).

The Peep in the water floated (the children noted, this is because of the air bubbles in the marshmallows), but colored the water yellow, almost immediately.

After about four hours, we could see some evidence of the pineapple at work on the second Peep...

...and turning the Peep in the water over, discovered all of the food coloring on the water logged side, was completely gone.

By bedtime, about eight hours after the start of the experiment, our Peeps looked like this...

...and by this morning had not changed much.

It appears the pineapple enzyme is winning over the water. But, it does make you wonder how long one of these little guys might sit in your stomach.

You can find further (sort of tongue in cheek) Peep dissolving experiments at www.peepresearch.org, if you want to know more.

It's great to be a homeschooler.


Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

I want to believe that stomach acids are a bit stronger than pineapple juice :) Very interesting experiment!

Susan said...

Nifty experiment, but YUCK! Even though stomach acids are stronger than pineapple juice, those Peeps probably do sit in your stomach for quite a while.

Debbie said...

Great experiment. It reminded me of when Selena and I did our experiment on stomach acid. Though I wonder would peeps sit in the stomach that much longer then crackers?

Christy Killoran said...

Ugh - it kind of turns your stomach, no? Great experiment.

Ticia said...

That is rather interseting.

Okay, I'm tempted to look at the other site, but it's almost midnight, and I still need to read my Bible tonight.

Sheltie Times said...

What a great experiment.