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Food Structure

Abstract

The microstructure of meat batters made with equal ionic strengths of NaCl, MgC1 2 , CaCl2 and KCl (IS- 0.43) and a reduced-NaCl batter (IS- 0.43) were examined by scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Micrographs revealed that fat globules with smooth and rough protein coats were present in all treatments. The roughly-coated globules were prevalent in the unstable batters. Pores were observed in the interfacial protein film (IPF) surrounding the globul es and were more prevalent in the globules with rough protein coats. Fat was seen to exude from the pores in both types of globules, Fat globules were shown to be immobilized by the physical binding of their IPF to the pro tein matrix. Thread~like protein strands appeared to play a role in binding the smaller fat globules to the protein matrix. The IPF had a complex, multilayered structure. Some of the larger globules had internal protein structures which were connected to the IPF and which partitioned and further stabilized the fat. The results indicate that fat emulsification and the interfacial film are important in preventing fat separation in meat batters.

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