A couple days ago, the Internet went wild over a video of some guy cooling a hot pizza under by running it under cold water from his kitchen sink faucet. In my opinion as a food writer and a professional pizzamaker, this is gross. I cannot in any situation justify this unless it is a life or death situation, and how would that even happen?
This video is quite the emotional rollercoaster. I wish I didn’t know about this, but now all of you do. And now Popular Science has written a full scientific analysis. This article is absolutely amazing, and even goes into Sir Isaac Newton’s Law of Cooling: the rate of cooling a slice is directly proportional to the temperature of the pizza and the temperature of the room that it is in.
The pizza cooling equation Pop Sci used is this:
Q = h x A x (T(t) —Tenv) = h x A x T(t)
Now, I only copied and pasted that into the article so I look like I am smart. I am what you may call a certified genius in that I have an English degree because I failed out of physics on my way to engineering school. You, on the other hand, may now tell your friends and family that you have spent your time reading equations today, and that you have successfully become a scientist due to The Takeout. You are welcome.
What I am trying to understand is why the man ran the pizza directly under the water. I mean, there are plenty of alternative methods, like, you know, waiting? Or, in this weird hypothetical life-or-death situation, how about putting it in a Ziploc bag and then running it under cold water? Plastic wrap, even. So really, rather than thermodynamics, I think personally, we should be examining the psychology of the situation. Let’s recline in a chair and think to ourselves, “How did watching a man running pizza under water make you feel?”