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Culinary herbs inhibit lipid oxidation in raw and cooked minced meat patties during storage

El-Alim, S.S.L.A., Lugasi, A., Hovari, J., Dworschak, E.
Journal of the science of food and agriculture 1999 v.79 no.2 pp. 277-285
chicken meat, pork, raw foods, meat products, frozen meat, meat quality, lipids, oxidation, lipid peroxidation, spices, antioxidants, frozen storage, refrigeration, cold storage, sodium chloride, microwave cooking, microwave treatment, peroxide value, extracts
The effect of dried spices and the ethanol extract of those spices was studied on the stability of fresh chicken minced meat, and fresh and cooked pork patties pretreated with NaCl during refrigerated and frozen storage. The antioxidant activities of the spices were measured by thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) and peroxide value (POV) in meat samples. The lipid oxidation was effectively inhibited in the chicken meat treated with several dry spices diminishing the TBARS to a range of 32% and 83% of those found in the control samples in frozen stored meat for 6 months. Marjoram, wild marjoram and caraway were the most effective dry spices. Ethanolic extracts of the same spices were more potent as antioxidants by lowering the concentration of the TBARS to a range of 20-27% of those found in the control samples. Addition of sodium salt to the minced pork resulted very high concentrations of the oxidation products originated from the polyunsaturated fatty acids. The treatment with ethanolic extract of spices (sage, basil, thyme and ginger) significantly inhibited the lipid peroxidation in refrigerated and chilled pork patties pretreated with NaCl by reducing both POV and TBARS. Heat treatment with microwaves produced significantly elevated levels of both lipid peroxides and TBARS, but the amount of these oxidation products was less than 10% in spice-treated salted meat samples compared to that in untreated ones. Lipid peroxidation also grew continuously during the storage period at -18 degrees C in raw and cooked samples. Ethanolic extracts of spices had a very strong antioxidative effect inhibiting lipid peroxidation in heat-treated meat products during frozen storage. The highest antioxidant activity was observed in the case of ginger. High correlation coefficients were found between TBARS and POV both in raw and cooked pork patties (0.86, 0.91, respectively) during frozen storage. It is supposed that these compounds originated from the polyunsaturated fatty acids during oxidation processes but at different stages. Utilization of spices, spice mixtures or spice extracts in semi-prepared meat products intended to be frozen for up to 6 months or more before consumption is proved to be advantageous in regard of shelf life of the food, as well as of human health, because of the beneficial effect of spices in inhibition of lipid peroxidation during heat treatment and chilling storage.