muffins and leavening agents

Leavening agents are used to create rise in breads, muffins and other baked goods.

Sep 14, 2017

Baked goods are made delicious in part by leavening agents that create the rise in their texture. Some of the earliest leavening agents were derived from antlers, ashes or even urine.  Sue Queisser, an Oregon State University food scientist, baker and engineer, will present “Lift: The Science and Surprising History of Leavening Agents,” on September 19 at the OSU-Cascades Science Pub.

Skilled bakers and non-bakers alike are invited to join Queisser on an exploration of how the products used to bring loft to culinary creations actually work, as well as the surprising stories behind their origins.  Topics she will cover include the differences between baking soda and baking powder, why baked goods sometimes collapse, how yeast interacts with flour and water to produce bread.

Participants will learn troubleshooting tips, to help achieve optimal results in the home kitchen.

Queisser manages the Center for Sensory and Consumer Behavior Research at OSU’s Department of Food Science and Technology. After receiving an undergraduate degree in printmaking,  she earned a degree in mechanical engineering at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. She worked as a process engineer at Hewlett-Packard before earning a degree in food science degree.

Queisser also owns Melarova Baking in Corvallis, Ore

OSU-Cascades Science Pubs engage community members in the work underway by Oregon State researchers and scholars from both the Corvallis and Bend campuses. Since 2009, OSU-Cascades has hosted Science Pubs on topics ranging from fermentation science to forest fires to autism.

Science Pubs take place from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.  Networking and food and beverage service begin at 5:30 p.m., and the presentation begins at 6:30 p.m. Science Pubs are free to community members, but reservations are required.  Space is limited to 100 guests. 

Register by 5:00pm the day prior to each Science Pub at

About OSU-Cascades: Oregon State University’s branch campus in Bend, Ore., features outstanding faculty in degree programs that reflect Central Oregon’s vibrant economy and abundant natural resources. Nearly 20 undergraduate majors, 30 minors and options, and four graduate programs include computer science, energy systems engineering, kinesiology, hospitality management, and tourism, recreation and adventure leadership. The branch campus expanded to a four-year university in 2015; its new campus opened in 2016.