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J Food Sci. 2009 May-Jul;74(4):E207-17. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2009.01140.x.

Rheological and microstructural properties of porcine myofibrillar protein-lipid emulsion composite gels.

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State Key Laboratory of Food Science and Technology, and School of Food Science and Technology, Jiangnan Univ., Wuxi, Jiangsu 214122, China.


The objective of the study was to investigate the role of emulsified fat (lard) and oil (peanut oil) in the rheology and microstructure of porcine myofibrillar protein (MP) gels. Heat-induced composite gels were prepared from 2% MP with 0% to 15% pre-emulsified lipids at 0.6 M NaCl, pH 6.2. Dynamic rheological testing upon temperature sweeping (20 to 80 degrees C at 2 degrees C/min) showed substantial increases in G' (an elastic modulus) of MP sols/gels with the addition of emulsions. Gel hardness was markedly enhanced (P < 0.05) by incorporating >or=10% emulsions, and the composite gel with 15% lard was 33% more rigid (P < 0.05) than that with 15% peanut oil. Incorporation of both emulsions at 10% or higher levels improved the water holding capacity of the gels by 28% to 44% (P < 0.05). Light microscopy revealed a compact gel structure filled with protein-coated fat/oil globules that interacted with the protein matrix via disulfide bonds. The results indicated that both physical and chemical forces contributed to the enhancements in the rheology, moisture retention, and lipid stabilization in the MP-emulsion composite gels.

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