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When I mix Cayenne Pepper and cinnamon in hot or cold water, after it settles the pepper and cinnamon gather into some kind of goo. What is that?
Question Date: 2008-03-01
Answer 1:

When you mix different kitchen spices with water, they behave differently. As you might have noticed, if you mix sugar with water it dissolves and goes into the water so that there is none left at the bottom. Salt does the same thing! The reason for this is because sugar and salt are hydrophilic (hydro = water, philic = friendship), meaning that sugar and salt like water because of what they are made up of. Cinnamon and cayenne pepper, on the other hand, are hydrophobic (hydro again meaning water and phobic = afraid). When they are mixed with water they do not want to dissolve, but they do want to stick together with each other. So while they are sticking together (this is why youll see clumps/balls), the water is surrounding them and trying unsuccessfully to break them apart. This is why cayenne pepper and cinnamon and also other hydrophobic things will stick together in water and not dissolve, but settle at the bottom to form a goo-type substance.

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