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Extruded snacks from pulses and pseudocereal proteins

 

The protein-rich fractions of pulses and pseudocereals exhibit a well-balanced amino acid profile, particularly when combined in different portions, and are therefore high-value ingredients for the production of extruded snacks. However, the impact of a combination of pulses and pseudocereals on the physical and sensory qualities of extruded snacks has not been investigated up to now.

Native or preconditioned protein isolates and concentrates from pulses-as single ingredients or in combination with protein-rich flours of pseudocereals-were analyzed by German Researchers regarding their thermal and functional properties in relation to extrusion characteristics. Low moisture extrusion cooking was used to investigate the impact of protein source (lentil, lupin, faba bean), pseudocereal source (quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat) and protein content (30%, 50%, 70%) on sectional expansion, specific hardness, density and sensory properties of the snacks. With increasing protein content from 30% to 50%, the sectional expansion decreased and the density and specific hardness of the extrudates increased, which could be counteracted by preconditioning of the protein-rich ingredients. Lupin protein-based extrudates exhibited satisfactory texture and sensory properties. Extruded mixtures of pulses and pseudocereals (70% protein) exhibited a smaller sectional expansion compared to pulses as single ingredients (30%, 50%), regardless of pseudocereal type. However, the texture and sensory properties of the extruded blends were satisfactory. 

In conclusion, Researchers showed for the first time that protein-rich fractions of pulses and pseudocereals can be processed into expanded snacks with favorable texture and nutritional properties such as increased protein contents (70%) and balanced amino acid profiles. These results were published in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.

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