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No. 95 - Citric Acid - Sour Salt

Quick Overview

Because it is one of the stronger edible acids, the dominant use of citric acid is used as a flavoring and preservative in food and beverages, especially soft drinks.

Citric acid can be added to ice cream as an emulsifying agent to keep fats from separating, to caramel to prevent sucrose crystallization, or in recipes in place of fresh lemon juice. Citric acid sold in a dry powdered form is commonly sold in markets and groceries as "sour salt", due to its physical resemblance to table salt. It has use in culinary applications, as an alternative to vinegar or lemon juice, where a pure acid is needed.

Citric acid can be used in food coloring to balance the pH level of a normally basic dye.

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Common Uses No
History Citric acid was first isolated in 1784 by the chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele, who crystallized it from lemon juice. It can exist either in an anhydrous (water-free) form or as a monohydrate. The anhydrous form crystallizes from hot water, while the monohydrate forms when citric acid is crystallized from cold water.
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