Hello. I’m new, and signed up just to see if anyone can answer this question, but I do love food science, and used to watch Alton Brown’s show on Food channel religiously.
So… the question, which requires a little explanation. I make something I call Pizza Eggs. Pretty simple. Beat a few eggs together, heat some chopped pepperoni (Hormel slices) in a skillet until it starts to sweat out some of the oils, add a little butter/olive oil and then the eggs. Scramble, adding salt, pepper, whatever I’m in the mood for, which usually involves garlic and always involves cheese. Just before you remove it from the pan, add pizza sauce or tomato sauce, whatever I have on hand.
If I add the tomato sauce a little too early, the flavor changes entirely, and it is NOT a good thing. The only way I can describe it is ‘gritty’, though it’s not really a texture. You have to add it early enough to warm it to the temperature of the eggs, at least, so it’s a little touchy. I usually take them off the heat when they’re a still a little wet, and add the tomato sauce just as they’re completely set. It cools them just enough to prevent overcooking, but sometimes cools them too much, and reheating gives the same result as adding the sauce too early. Nasty taste.
So why does the flavor change if I add the tomato sauce too early? I get that it has to be something that happens to the tomato sauce or the combination of egg and sauce above a specific temperature, but I have no idea what it could be. I haven’t tried homemade fresh sauce, so I don’t even know if it’s something in the processing, but I do know the acid in tomatoes changes things as they’re cooked, so I suspect it’s related. Maybe preheating the sauce would help? I haven’t tried it.
If you know what’s happening to my poor eggs, please let me know. And thanks!