Flavoursome fibres

Related tags Flavour Cereal

The healthy components of fibres such as oats and rye can also
enhance their flavour if the correct processing techniques are
used, claims new Finnish research.

The author suggests that manufacturers could use more wholegrain foods, meeting growing consumer demand for healthy products, if they have access to better knowledge about the flavour properties of certain grains.

A study out yesterday showed that intake of cereal fibre along with vitamin D could significantly reduce the risk of colon cancer, the second most common cancer among men and women in the Western world. Other research shows that intake of wholegrains is inversely associated with weight gain. The WHO's diet and chronic disease report notes that fibre is key to prevention of obesity, heart disease and related non-communicable diseases.

The new research, published by VTT Finland, reveals that the highly varied flavour attributes of grains can be tailored according to consumer expectations, using new processing tools. The study also discusses options for novel, palatable wholegrain foods with high bioactivity, such as breakfast and snack products.

Raija-Liisa Heinio writes that flavour components are unevenly distributed in the rye grain with the innermost endosperm being the mildest, and the outer bran layers being the most bitter and intense in flavour. The shorts fraction in the middle of the rye grain, which has high bioactivity, proved to offer most potential for new products as it has a cereal-like flavour without any obvious bitterness.

The author investigates changes to the relatively mild flavour of grains by applying different processing techniques, such as milling fractionation, sourdough fermentation and baking, germination and subsequent heat treatment as well as extrusion cooking.

Sourdough baking and germination was found to increase the amounts of phenolic compounds in rye, most of which are beneficial to health. And contrary to expectations, these phenolic compounds also considerably influenced the perceived flavour.

Heinio also shows that sourdough fermentation of rye produces sour and intense flavour notes and this flavour is changed again with further heat treatments, such as baking or extrusion cooking.

Other trials evaluated a new, short germination procedure applied to oat and rye. Germination and drying extended the shelf-life of crushed oat in comparison with native oat.

Contact the VTT Information Service​ for more information on this study.

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