Effect of lactic acid fermentation on antioxidant, texture, color and sensory properties of red and green smoothies.
Di Cagno R
De Angelis M
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Weissella cibaria, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus sp. and Lactobacillus pentosus were variously identified from blackberries, prunes, kiwifruits, papaya and fennels by partial 16S rRNA gene sequence. Representative isolates from each plant species were screened based on the kinetics of growth on fruit juices. A protocol for processing and storage of red and green smoothies (RS and GS) was set up, which included fermentation by selected lactic acid bacteria starters and exo-polysaccharide producing strains. Starters grew and remained viable at ca. 9.0 log cfu g−1 during 30 days of storage at 4 °C. No contaminating Enterobacteriaceae and yeast were found throughout storage. Values of soluble solids, total titratable acidity and viscosity distinguished started RS and GS compared to spontaneously (unstarted) fermented smoothies. Color difference dE∗ab and browning index were positively affected by lactic acid fermentation. Consumption of carbohydrates by lactic acid bacteria was limited as well as it was the lactic fermentation. Consumption of malic acid was evident throughout storage. Polyphenolic compounds and, especially, ascorbic acid were better preserved in started RS and GS compared to unstarted samples. This reflected on the free radical scavenging activity. A statistical correlation was only found between the level of ascorbic acid and free radical scavenging activity. As shown by a ﬁrst-order equation, the rate of degradation of ascorbic acid through storage were found to be higher in the unstarted compared to started RS and GS. Fermentation by lactic acid bacteria clearly improved the sensory attributes of RS and GS.