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Effect of precooking time and drying temperature on the physico-chemical characteristics and in-vitro carbohydrate digestibility of taro flour
Achu is a thick porridge obtained by cooking and pounding taro (Colocasia esculenta) corms and cormels in a mortar. This study was undertaken with the objective of producing precooked taro flour that can be used in the preparation of achu. Taro slices were precooked to times of 0, 20, 45 and 90 min and dried in an air convection oven at varying temperatures of 50, 60, 70 or 80 1C before milling into flour which was then analysed for its water absorption capacity (WAC), water solubility index, emulsion activity and stability, bulk density, foam capacity and least gelation concentration (LGC). Achu made from the flours were equally analysed for their relative penetrometric index, bulk density and colour. The results showed that precooking induced significant (Po0:05) decrease in foam capacity, penetrometric index, and increase in LGC, emulsion stability and WAC. The drying temperature also induces significant reduction in emulsion capacity and stability, penetrometric index, and increase in LGC, WAC. Long precooking time (445 min) and drying temperature (460 1C) induced significant reduction of the in-vitro carbohydrate digestibility of taro achu.
Keywords: Taro flour; Food processing; Physico-chemical properties; In-vitro carbohydrate digestibility