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Thermal gelation of Pacific whiting surimi in microwave assisted pasteurization

Wang, Jungang, Tang, Juming, Park, Jae W., Rasco, Barbara, Tang, Zhongwei, Qu, Zhi
Journal of food engineering 2019 v.258 pp. 18-26
Clostridium botulinum, Merluccius productus, dielectric properties, gelation, gels, heat, microwave treatment, model food systems, pastes, pasteurization, pouches, spores, sucrose, surimi, texture
This research invetigated the potential of microwave assisted pasteurization systems (MAPS) for production of molded or thick sheeted products from Pacific whiting (PW) surimi. Prior to MAPS processing, a systematic study was conducted to evaluate the effect of heating rate on textural properties of PW gels by heating surimi paste from 3 °C/min to 24 °C/min. No gel was formed at a slow heating rate (3 °C/min). Gels with greater strength were achieved with higher heating rates. The heating pattern for the surimi pastes in microwave heating was predicted using a gellan gel model food in which 2% salt and 40% sucrose were added to adjust the dielectric properties. Prepackaged PW surimi paste in pouches were pasteurized to a similiar leathal lethalty for non-proteolytic Clostridium botulinum spores with MAPS or water bath as control. The breaking force and penetration distance of the PW surimi gels were significantly (P < 0.05) higher when processed in MAPS as compared to water bath.