Purpose: Chips are awesome. Ruffles, Doritos, Cheetos, Lays, tostitos, pringles, so on and so forth. But then there are Funyuns. A chalky, gritty, abomination that just happens to have amazing onion-garlicy seasonings. The purpose of this experiment is to determine if those flavors could be transmuted upon a blank dorito like chip. Identifying a proper vessel for this bouquet of flavors could unlock next level snacking. Therefore, in this experiment, Scientific AmeriKen will attempt to hack the funyun with a dorito and make the Funrito!

Hypothesis: The experiment will require two critical steps, the first will involve de-seasoning of the dorito. As the dorito is likely created blank and seasoned as needed it is hypothesized that this process will be relatively simple. Secondly, re-seasoning with funyun flavors is also hypothesized to be a simple process as the seasoning seem to readily come off onto one's hands while eating.

Materials and Methods: Used in this experiment were a bag of funyuns, dorito cool ranch flavor, and dorito salsa verde (Figure right). For de-seasoning, doritos were dunked in a glass of water and scrubbed clean with fingers (approximately 5-10 seconds). Three strategies were attempted to dry the chips include air dry, paper towel dry, and toaster oven bake dry. Next, for re-seasoning, dried chips were either thrown slightly wet, dry, or dry and coated with olive oil, into and mixed around a funyuns bag - or patted onto crushed funyun particles. Taste testing was performed by Scientific AmeriKen and son.

Results: Initially both types of dorito chips were de-seasoned by dipping the chip into clean filtered water (Figure below, left). Post-use water is pictured in Figure below, center. Effectiveness of de-seasoning was assessed through tasting of the chip. Residual spiciness (presumably capsaicins) were detected on the de-seasoned salsa verde chips, whereas cool ranch chips were completely devoid of flavor - these were subsequently used for the rest of the experiment. Next, three strategies were used for drying of chips following this procedure including letting chips sit to air dry, patting dry with a paper towel, and oven baking them (Figure below, right). Taste testing revealed air dried chips were stale following the process, while timing was difficult during oven baking between drying and burning. Experiment proceeded with paper towel dried and oven dried chips.

Next, for re-seasoning, three strategies were used including placing dried chips or olive oil coated chips into the funyuns bag and shaking it around (Figure below, left) or by placing the dried or olive oil coated chips on top of and rubbing around in finely crushed funyuns. Final product of this latter process is shown in Figure below, right. It was noted that seasoning did not collect on the chips by shaking inside the funyun bag regardless of preparation style. Finely crushed funyuns did however nicely adhered to olive oil coated chips and these were subsequently used in the taste test.

Finally, Scientific AmeriKen and son conducted a taste test of the finished product. It was the opinion of ScientificAmeriKen that the chip had a bland flavor with olive oil undertones. The son of ScientificAmeriKen seemed neither pleased by the final product nor disgusted by it, Scientific AmeriKen describes the overall reaction from the kid as, "Meh" (Figure below).

Conclusion: To the surprise of ScientificAmeriKen, the Funyuns chips could not be "alchemized" into funritos style doritos. Although there may have been some issue involving the use of olive oil as the glue to hold the seasoning, ultimately the failure was in the lack of robust flavor. The seasoning strength of the funyuns could not overcome to tortilla chip flavor. Perhaps this explains the need for the mealy styrofoam vessel that the funyuns people have chosen for their product. One interesting development from this study however was in discovering what might have been a better tasting dorito created by toasting the chips. More research may involve toasting different chips to enhance the flavor experience.

Scientific AmeriKen Thanks the efforts of son in the creation of this experiment.





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