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J Agric Food Chem. 2003 Apr 9;51(8):2328-34.

Evolution of green coffee protein profiles with maturation and relationship to coffee cup quality.

Author information

1
Nestlé Research Centre, Nestec Ltd., Vers-chez-les-Blanc, P.O. Box 44, CH-1000 Lausanne 26, Switzerland. philippe.montavon@rdls.nestle.com

Abstract

Coffee flavor is the product of a complex chain of chemical transformations. The green bean has only a faint odor that is not at all reminiscent of coffee aroma. It contains, however, all of the necessary precursors to generate the unmistakable coffee flavor during roasting. The levels and biochemical status of these precursors may vary in relation to genetic traits, environmental factors, maturation level, postharvest treatment, and storage. To improve our understanding of coffee flavor generation, the sensory and biochemical impact of maturation was assessed. Maturation clearly favored the development of high-quality flavor in the coffee brew. A specific subclass of green coffee beans, however, generated high-quality coffee flavor irrespective of maturation. Biochemical aspects were examined using a dynamic system: immature and mature green coffee suspensions were incubated under air or argon. On the analytical side, a specific pool of flavor precursors was monitored: chlorogenic acids, green coffee proteins, and free amino acids. A link between maturation, the redox behavior of green coffee suspensions, and their sensory scores was identified. Compared to ripe beans, unripe beans were found to be more sensitive to oxidation of chlorogenic acids. Aerobic incubation also triggered the fragmentation or digestion of the 11S seed storage protein and the release of free amino acids.

PMID:
12670177
DOI:
10.1021/jf020831j
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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