Improving cooking quality of grain legumes
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CTA. 1998. Improving cooking quality of grain legumes. Spore 73. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/48965
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore73.pdf
A project to improve the cooking quality of grain legumes and their products has been undertaken in Kenya and Cameroon and coordinated by the Institute of Food Research based in Norwich, UK.Beans are inexpensive, rich sources of dietary proteins and...
A project to improve the cooking quality of grain legumes and their products has been undertaken in Kenya and Cameroon and coordinated by the Institute of Food Research based in Norwich, UK. Beans are inexpensive, rich sources of dietary proteins and can have beneficial effects on human health. However, they are often under-utilized as human food, due to undesirable characteristics such as the hard-to-cook (HTC) phenomenon and the presence of anti-nutritional factors that interfere with digestion. The HTC defect develops in beans during storage under high humidity and high temperature conditions which also increases the anti-nutritional factors. HTC beans take up to 12 hours to soften due to changes in the plant cell walls and the increased cooking time uses more water and fuel. Freshly harvested beans require only twenty minutes cooking to achieve cell separation and tissue softening. In HTC beans however, this treatment fails to induce cell separation, and the tissue fractures only through rupture of the cell walls which causes the beans to remain hard. In addition to studying the underlying causes of the HTC defect, researchers developed ways to modify flour from HTC beans into forms that were more acceptable for human consumption. Extrusion cooking was identified as an efficient way to reduce the levels of anti-nutrients in these beans, particularly lectin: protein and starch digestibility was also increased. The resulting flour contained higher levels of digestible protein and was successfully incorporated into a range of African foods. Surveys in Kenya and Cameroon showed that there is potential for the development of nutritionally-enhanced baby and snack foods. External Relations Office Institute of Food Research Norwich Research Park Colney Norwich NR4 7UA, UK