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Extracts

extract, oil, vanilla and obtained

EXTRACTS: as familiar to the average retailer and consumer, consist of a certain percentage of true extract or essence, or its chemical imitation, in an alcoholic solu tion. The aromatic principles of a great many spices, nuts, herbs, fruits, etc., and some flowers, are thus marketed, among the best known of true extracts being almond, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, lemon, nutmeg, orange, peppermint, pistachio, rose, spear mint, vanilla, violet and wintergreen.

A majority of natural essences are obtained by extracting the essential oil from the blossoms, fruit, roots, etc., or the whole plants, by expression, absorption, distil lation or maceration. The first method, that of Expression, can only be employed when the oil is very plentiful and easily obtained, as in lemon peel (see LEMON OIL). The second, Absorption, is generally accomplished by steeping in alcohol, as vanilla beans (see VANILLA EXTRACT) . The third, Distillation (which see) is sometimes compara tively easy, as when following Maceration in making peppermint extract, etc. (see MINT), but in many cases it requires expert chemical knowledge and the erection of costly stills.

The distinctive flavors of nearly all fruits, in the popular acceptance of the word, are very desirable adjuncts to many food preparations, but unfortunately there are only a few from which it is practicable to obtain a concentrated flavor extract of the necessary strength. Among those which lend themselves readily to the manufacture

of "pure" extracts the most important are lemons, oranges and vanilla beans.

A majority of other concentrated fruit flavors, as banana, cherry, currant, peach, pineapple, raspberry and strawberry, are produced by chemical combinations of com pound ethers, together with special oils, etc , the desired colors being generally obtained by the use of coal-tar dyes. Among the ethers most generally employed are Acetic and Butyric (which see). The chief factors in the production of artificial banana and pine apple extract, and also important in the m mufacture of strawberry extract, are amyl acetate and amyl-butyrate, Amyl Alcohol being the principal constituent of that part of the alcohol obtained by the distillation of grain and potato starch, etc., which is popularly known in this country as "fusel oil" and in Europe generally by the title of "potato oil." Artificial extracts do not as a rule possess the delicacy of the fruit flavor, but they get sufficiently close to it to be of real service and convenience when true essences are unobtainable.