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Enhanced texture, yield and safety of a ready-to-eat salted duck meat product using a high pressure-heat process

Khan, Muhammad Ammar, Ali, Sher, Abid, Muhammad, Ahmad, Hussain, Zhang, Lixia, Tume, Ronald Keith, Zhou, Guanghong
Innovative food science & emerging technologies 2014 v.21 pp. 50-57
actin, color, cooking quality, denaturation, duck meat, hardness, heat, high pressure treatment, meat processing plants, microbial load, myofibrillar proteins, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, palatability, pickling, protein denaturation, ready-to-eat foods, salting, temperature, texture
This study investigated the effects of high pressure, in combination with heat, for development of a ready-to-eat salted duck meat product. Duck breast was subjected to a salting and pickling process prior to either heating-alone (70°C) or high-pressure (200MPa) with heating (70°C) for 10 or 20min, and compared with a cooked control (core temperature 80°C at 0.1MPa) for quality assessment. Compared with the cooked control, pressure-heat treated samples exhibited reduced cooking losses, and NMR showed they had larger fast-relaxation proton compartments. Pressure-heat preserved some sarcoplasmic and connective tissue proteins, but caused greater denaturation of actin than with heat-only samples. The reduction in microbial load with pressure-heat indicated suitability of the process for ready-to-eat products. Pressure-heat treatment did not affect color, but there was a decrease in hardness and gumminess, suggesting higher palatability. The reduction in cooking losses, resulting from altered proton compartmentalization, and changes in myofibrillar proteins enhanced product acceptability.The application of high hydrostatic pressure technology for food processing has gained much interest over recent decades because of its benefits over conventional methods. Its suitability for ready-to-eat Nanjing-style salted duck meat product was determined by assessment of proton compartmentalization and mobility by NMR, extent of protein denaturation by DSC, microbial numbers, surface color and texture which described product acceptability, palatability and microbial safety. This single-step process will aid the meat processing industry in improving existing processing methods by incorporation of high pressure technology to improve product quality and process efficiency.