Food Structure


A model meat emulsion system was used to evaluate the effects of cooking time and temperature on texture, microstructure and cook stability of meat emulsions containing soy or canola protein isolate. The plant proteins were incorporated either dry or rehydrated at replacement levels of 33.3% and 66.7% of the meat protein, and the emulsions were cooked at 70 or 95 C tor 25 or 50 min. Texture of the cooked emulsions was assessed by an instrumental texture profile analysis (TPA) using an lnstron tester . Analysis of TPA and stability data revealed several complex Interactions between experimental variables; however, level of protein replacement was the predominant factor, with decreased firmness and increased yield resulting from increased replacement of meat protein.

Microstructure of the cooked emulsions was examined by light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Although there were slight differences in the fat particle distributions of emulsions containing plant proteins, the distributions were similar , where particles with diameters larger than 50 approximated a normal distribution and were thought to be relatively intact fat cells, while the number of particles with diameters of 10-50 um increased in an essentially logarithmic manner as size decreased . Microstructure of the proteinaceous matrix was affected primarily by protein source, replacement level and cooking conditions.

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