Crispiness or crispness is the gustatory sensation of brittleness in the mouth, such that the food item shatters immediately upon mastication. Crispiness differs from crunchiness in that a crunchy food continues to provide its material sensation after a few chews. On the other hand, a crispy food quickly loses the 'taut' equilibrium of its material, such as a tightly wrapped sausage.
It is possible for a food to be crispy, crunchy, or both.
Cooking techniques for crispiness
There are a number of techniques to achieve crispiness when cooking. Frying food can make it crispy, such seen in French fries. A breading coating using flour, egg wash, and bread crumbs will provide a layer of crispiness. Baking and roasting impart crispiness, as well, as noted in the skin of Peking duck or pernil.
Crispiness is lost when food items are heated in the microwave oven as microwaves heat water within the food that then makes the food margins soggy.
Other meanings of crispness but not crispiness
Crispness and crisp are also used for other meanings besides crispiness and crispy. Thus a quick and sharp answer may be termed a "crisp answer". The term crispness is also used to indicate freshness. Thereby a "crisp salad" is a fresh salad, - no limpness in it. A wine may be described as "crisp" indicating in this context that it is refreshing and has some acidity. Cold and dry air may be termed "crisp" (but not crispy).
The slang term crispyness denotes an attitude of being up for new things or adventures.
- Editors, America's Test Kitchen. The Science of Good Cooking. America's Test Kitchen, 2012. p. 152f. ISBN 978-1-933615-98-1.