How does a Reverse Osmosis system affect the pH of your water?

by Abbey R Published 6.20.2014

First, it is important to understand that liquids are measured on the pH scale. A value of 7 on the scale is considered neutral (neither acidic nor basic). Values lower than 7 are considered acidic whereas values higher than 7 are considered basic or alkaline. If you would like to learn more about pH, check out this post by Ed R.

You can taste a difference in water as the pH shifts. The lower the pH of the water the more likely it is to have a bitter metallic taste. Soda, pop or soda pop or whatever you call it has an average pH of 3; however, the higher the pH of the water the more likely it is to have a soda taste. Outside of taste concerns, there are good reasons why pH is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The regulated values for the pH of drinking water are between 6.5 and 8.5. Water with a pH value lower than 6.5 may have a higher concentration of lead or copper due to degrading pipes and fixtures. Water with a value higher than 8.5 typically has a higher amount of dissolved solids which can lead to scaling or build up in your pipes. Scaling can cause a restriction in the water flow because it effectively makes your pipes smaller.

Woman examining her glass of water

How does water become acidic or basic? Well, precipitation that falls to renew our water sources is acidic. (Remember all the headlines about acid rain?) Much of the acidic nature of the rain stems from burning fossil fuels—coal and oil. Once the rain falls, it comes into contact with stone and dirt, which dissolves into the water and works to neutralize the acid and/or make the water basic. In a broad generality, surface water (e.g. a lake) is more likely to be acidic than ground water (i.e. water from a well) because it hasn’t dissolved as much soil and stone. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean you can determine the pH of your water just by knowing the source. Some public water suppliers will purposely make the water alkaline to limit the corrosion of their pipes. Similarly, well water can absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) from decaying vegetation which will increase the acidity of the water.

Once you know your water’s pH, the question is how does an RO system change it? Your feed water or incoming water naturally exhibits a balanced relationship between carbon dioxide and bicarbonates. However, the membrane reduces the amount of bicarbonates, which leaves extra carbon dioxide in the permeate stream—the water you eventually drink. The excess carbon dioxide can result in a more acidic solution. The effect of this reaction is more noticeable if your feed water is more alkaline or basic, since it undergoes a more drastic change.

So, basically, an RO could make your water noticeably more acidic if your incoming water is basic, but some might not notice any difference if their water is already acidic. If you are gravely concerned with the pH of your water, you can use a mineralizing filter to neutralize your water. While RO water may be on the acidic side of neutral, its acidity does not compare to commonly consumed beverages such as soda and orange juice. As always, we encourage you to consult your local water professional to find out what’s in your water, and how your family might be affected by it.

Contact Abbey R.


Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Superbowl Pizza Dough Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 1.30.2014

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

Chef Steve Schimoler

When I think about having friends over for a Super Bowl party, one word comes to mind: pizza. The biggest football event of the year doesn’t seem complete unless pizza is on the menu.

Homemade pizza dough is actually pretty simple to make…with the main ingredients being flour and—you guessed it—water. But you don’t want to use just any water. Purified water will help ensure that the taste of the dough is free from minerals and true to its flavor. Plus, water that it too hard can lead to stiffer dough whereas very soft water can create a slow-rising, weaker dough. Purified water ensures that the dough turns out as intended.

Of course, water temperature and the amount used can play key roles in the quality of the dough, as well as the temperature and humidity in your kitchen as it will effect the proofing and “rise” of your dough. It may take a few experiments to get the dough consistency you’re looking for… or as you search for alternate crust styles. But it’s worth it in the end as there is nothing really like working with the supple texture of the dough as you knead it and work it with your fingers.

The only other advice I’ll give is to be careful: once you start making your own pizza dough, you won’t want to eat any other kind ever again.

Superbowl Sunday Pizza Dough

Ingredients:

Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water (110°F to 115°F) 2/3 cup
Sugar 1 tsp.
Fast Rise Yeast or Active Dry Yeast 1/8 oz. package
Bread Flour 1 3/4 cups
Salt 1/2 tsp.
Cornmeal (optional) 1 TBSP

Directions:

  • Combine water and sugar in small bowl; stir to dissolve sugar.
  • Sprinkle yeast on top; stir to combine.
  • Let stand 5 to 10 minutes or until foamy.
  • Combine flour and salt in medium bowl.
  • Stir in yeast mixture.
  • Mix until mixture forms soft dough.
  • Remove dough to lightly floured surface.
  • Knead 5 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic, adding additional flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed.
  • Place dough in medium bowl coated with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Turn dough in bowl so top is coated with cooking spray; cover with towel or plastic wrap.
  • Let rise in warm place 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
  • Punch dough down; place on lightly floured surface and knead about 2 minutes or until smooth.
  • Pat dough into flat disc about 7 inches in diameter.
  • Let rest 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Pat and gently stretch dough from edges until dough seems to not stretch anymore.
  • Let rest 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Continue patting and stretching until dough is 12 to 14 inches in diameter.

You’re ready to assemble your pizza now and feel free to improvise with your toppings, but I tend to go with the straight up Marinara and Mozzarella style. You can use a pizza pan to bake on, but I prefer using a pizza stone that’s already in the preheated 500 degree oven and using a pizza peel, slide the pie onto the stone and bake till it starts to blister on the crust and the cheese is fully melted and starts to bubble. Eat right away! Enjoy.


How does hard water affect my coffee and tea?

by Mark B Published 12.11.2013

A cup of tea or coffee is 99% water, so the water used for brewing makes a big difference in the quality of what you drink. There are hundreds of compounds that are released when hot water hits the beans and leaves. When we taste, we actually use both the tongue and the nose to create a complete picture. (Just try eating soup with one hand pinching your nose…it won’t taste the same.) So if the water isn’t especially good, it can rob you of what should be a pleasurable break—chlorine and hardness are major culprits.

Chlorine will attack the flavor compounds and may be strong enough to compete with the aroma from the cup. A good carbon filter is all that’s needed to eliminate this bad actor from your diet, and the rest of your drinking water will taste better too.

Hardness is typically Calcium and Magnesium and maybe a little Iron that’s dissolved in your water. (Learn more about hardness or iron). When these minerals combine with compounds in tea and coffee, they bind together to form solids. Flavors and aroma are tied up and taken away from your mouth and nose. A water softener and/or reverse osmosis system are effective ways to fix this problem. My personal preference is an RO system, because it has a carbon filter for the chlorine, a membrane to purify, and a mineral cartridge polisher to ensure a complementary balance of ions for the tea and coffee to steep in.

Here’s something you can try just for fun if you have hard water at home or work. It also makes a simple, but safe and effective science fair project. Buy a bottle of water at the supermarket, making sure to pick one that’s been treated by reverse osmosis. Brew two cups of tea at the same time in the microwave: one with hard water, and the other with RO water. About 90 seconds should do it. Take the cups out of the microwave and remove the teabags. Now compare color; is one muddier than the other? Smell and taste; the cup made with RO water will be brighter and livelier on the palate, and you may also detect a cleaner flavor. It’s easy to observe that just because a cup of tea is darker does not mean it is stronger or richer, or that is has a full range of flavors for you to enjoy.

I did this “tea test” with a standard bag of Lipton black tea and then took these photos.

Top view of the tea test results Side view of tea test results: RO waterSide view of tea test results: hard water

Can you guess which is which?

The tea made with RO water was, you guessed it, the one on the left. I chose a black tea (instead of a green or white) because I thought the result to be visually more striking. Doing this with a highly aromatic tea such as orange pekoe, or a more subtle green tea also demonstrates what a profound difference the right water makes.

Life is just too short for a bad cup.

Contact Mark B.


Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Mulled Tea & Cider Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 12.6.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

I love the smell of mulled tea and cider cooking on the stove. It makes the whole house smell wonderful. For this recipe, you’ll need fresh oranges, cinnamon sticks…and a few spices. Plus, be sure to use reverse osmosis water to achieve the best taste possible. Enjoy!

Mulled Tea and Cider

Ingredients:

Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water 1 qt.
Earl Grey Tea 6 bags
Apple Cider 1 cup, diced
Fresh Oranges 1 orange, sliced
Clove 5 pieces
Cardamom 5 pieces
Fresh Ginger Root 2 TBSP
Cinnamon Sticks 3 sticks

Preparation:

  • Add the water and cider to a sauce pot with the tea bags and bring to a boil.
  • Add all the other ingredients and boil for 1 minute.
  • Reduce flame to a low and simmer for 15–20 minutes.
  • Strain through a fine mesh strainer and serve.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Corn Bread Stuffing Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 11.22.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

Stuffing is loved by everyone in my family—even if each of us believes we have the best recipe. My favorite is this corn bread stuffing. I even use it on sandwiches at the restaurant. Make a batch for your guests and be prepared for rave reviews.

Corn Bread Stuffing

Ingredients:

Corn Bread 2 qts, 1" cubes
Unsalted Butter 4 TBSP
Celery 1 cup, diced
Onions 1.5 cups, diced
Carrots 1 cup, diced
Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water 3 cups
Honey 2 oz.
Fresh Sage 1 TBSP, minced
Fresh Rosemary 1 TBSP

Preparation:

  • Make the corn bread per your recipe, let dry overnight and cube into 1 inch by 1 inch cubes.
  • Dice all the vegetables and sauté in a large sauté pan till they just start to brown on the edges.
  • Add the 3 cups of RO Water.
  • Season with Salt and pepper and add the sage and rosemary, simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Add the vegetable mixture to the corn bread and add the honey and gently fold till just mixed.
  • Place in ovenproof casserole dish and bake at 350°F for 20 minutes.
  • Serve immediately.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Cranberry Compote Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 11.18.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

I’ve experimented over the years with how to make the best cranberry side dish, and I finally found it. I love this cranberry compote—and the best part is, you can make it days in advance!

Cranberry Compote

Ingredients:

Sugar 1 cup
Fresh or Frozen Cranberries 1 lb.
RO Water 1 qt
Vegetable Oil 1 TBSP
Minced Onion 3 TBSP
Orange Zest 2 oranges
Orange Juice 2 oranges
Fresh Rosemary 1 TBSP, minced
Pepper pinch
Salt ½ tsp

Preparation:

  • In a large sauté pan or sauce pot, add the oil and onions and sauté for 2 minutes till tender.
  • Add the sugar and cook while stirring for about 3 minutes until the sugar just starts to turn golden brown.
  • Add all the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20–30 minutes until the mixture starts to thicken. Remove and place in clean container and refrigerate at least 4–5 hours before use.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Holiday Gravy Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 11.11.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

Making your own gravy seems time-consuming, but it’s worth the effort because it makes all the difference in your holiday meal. The only debate you might face is how thick…or thin to make it. But if you’re doing the cooking, it’s your call.

Holiday Gravy

Ingredients:

Chicken Stock 2 quarts
Unsalted Butter 2 TBSP
Shallots or Onion 2 TBSP, minced
Dijon Mustard 1 TBSP
Corn Starch 3 TBSP
Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water 4 TBSP

Preparation:

  • Sauté the shallots with the butter for 2 minutes while stirring.
  • Add the Chicken stock and Dijon Mustard and bring to a boil.
  • Blend the corn starch and RO water till milky and smooth.
  • Whisk in the starch and reduce heat to simmer and wisk continually till it starts to thicken
  • Add the tarragon and simmer for 2 minutes.
  • Serve immediately or store refrigerated for 2–3 days.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Chicken Stock Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 11.6.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

This Thanksgiving, impress your guests by making your own gravy. Of course, the start to a great gravy—or soups, sauces, risotto and more—begins with a delicious chicken stock. And the number one ingredient that makes the stock a success is…purified water.

Chicken Stock

Ingredients:

Bones of 3 Chickens
Celery 2 cups, diced
Onion 2 cups, diced
Carrots 2 cups, diced
Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water 1½ gallons

Preparation:

  • Add all the vegetable to an oven-proof casserole or roasting pan.
  • Place the chicken bones on top and season with salt and pepper.
  • Roast in a 350 degree oven for 45–60 minutes until the bones and veggies are nicely browned and caramelized.
  • Place in a large stock pot and add the roasted veggies and chicken.
  • Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer for 3 hours.
  • Strain through a fine mesh strainer or Chinois.
  • Store in clean containers and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for future use.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 10.31.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

I love to incorporate the flavors of fall into my cooking, such as a delicious Butternut Squash Soup. Of course, in addition to the squash, the other necessary ingredient is purified water. In my latest video below, you’ll see how to make a great-tasting soup that captures the essence of autumn.

Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients:

Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water 2 quarts
Butternut Squash 2 quarts (1 large squash), seeded and cubed
Unsalted Butter 2 TBSP
Onion 2 cups, diced
Celery 2 cups, diced
Apples 2 cups, diced
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Preparation:

  • Prepare all the vegetables ahead of time.
  • In a large stock pot, add the butter and sauté all the vegetables till sweated, and start to become tender.
  • Add the RO water and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 35–45 minutes.
  • Cool to at least 80°F (26°C) before blending.
  • Add to a food processor or blender and puree till smooth and creamy texture.
  • Adjust seasonings and when ready to use, heat to a boil and serve immediately. Feel free to garnish with some fresh herbs or julienned apples.

Steve Schimoler: Cooking with Kinetico Water—Miso and Soba Soup Recipe

by Guest Bloggers Published 9.12.2013

Based on Steve’s passion for cooking, innovation and creating the best flavor in his recipes, he realizes that no ingredient is to be overlooked, including water. In 2012, Steve teamed with Kinetico to prove the notion that purified water is core to creating great-tasting dishes in his restaurant and in the home. Read more about culinary expert Steve Schimoler.

As I've mentioned in earlier writings, reverse osmosis water is the ultimate ingredient for cooking and beverages. Like you, I really want the subtle ingredients in all of my dishes to shine. This Miso and Soba Soup is one of my favorite water-using recipes because of its light, vibrant flavor. Enjoy!

Miso and Soba Soup

Ingredients:

Kinetico Reverse Osmosis Water 3 quarts
Yellow Miso Paste 1.5 Tbsp
Soba Noodles 4 oz. dry (approx. 8 oz. cooked)
Green Bell Pepper ½ , julienned
Red Bell Pepper ½ , julienned
Carrot 1 large, peeled & julienned
Minced Fresh Ginger 2 tsp
Cilantro 1 bunch picked leaves: 1 Tbsp minced for broth, remainder for garnish
Lite Soy Sauce 2 Tbsp
Cinnamon 1 large pinch

Prep:

  • In a large stock pot boils 2 quarts of RO water and cook soba noodles till tender, strain and chill under cold water, keep refrigerated until use and bring to room temp.
  • Prepare all the vegetables as listed and hold till ready to assemble the soup.
  • In a sauce pot, add 1 quart of RO water and bring to a boil.
  • Add the miso, ginger, cinnamon and cilantro and stir, reduce the heat to a simmer and simmer for 2 minutes.
  • Assemble noodles, vegetables in bowls as shown on the video and add the hot broth, garnish with the cilantro and serve immediately.

Water: Understand it, Value it, Respect it. Learn more about life’s most vital resource.

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