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Preference mapping of different water‐to‐rice ratios in cooked aromatic white jasmine rice

Maleki, Clinton, Oliver, Penelope, Lewin, Simone, Liem, Gie, Keast, Russell
Journal of food science 2020 v.85 no.5 pp. 1576-1585
chewiness, cohesion, consumer preferences, firmness, flavor, markets, odors, rice, stickiness, taste, texture
The volume of water is a key variable affecting texture and flavor attributes of cooked rice with a significant influence on consumer preference. The aim of this study was to determine the attributes driving consumer preference for rice cooked with different water‐to‐rice ratios. Descriptive analysis (DA) methodology was employed to profile aromatic white Jasmine rice and a consumer study was run to determine preference for water‐to‐rice ratios. A DA panel (n = 12) evaluated ten aroma, four taste and flavor, three texture, and six appearance attributes for aromatic white Jasmine rice cooked with four water‐to‐rice ratios (1.125:1, 1.5:1, 1.875:1, and 2.25:1). Rice consumers (n = 117) evaluated preferences of the same aromatic white Jasmine rice cooked with the aforementioned water‐to‐rice ratios. DA results revealed floral aroma, firmness, chewiness, coarseness, stickiness/cohesiveness, and fluffiness were significantly influenced by an increasing water‐to‐rice ratio. There was no significant effect of water‐to‐rice ratios on consumer preferences (χ² (3, 117) = 1.17; P = 0.76). Consumers were grouped into three clusters with similar preference patterns using agglomerative hierarchical clustering. External preference mapping techniques run on each consumer cluster determined the water‐to‐rice ratios 1.125:1 and 1.875:1 as having the largest appeal to heavy consumers of rice, split by preferences for fluffy or sticky cooked rice. The water‐to‐rice ratio 1.5:1 was not dominated by any single attribute or group of attributes, appealing to less frequent rice consumers. Therefore, the water‐to‐rice ratios 1.125:1, 1.5:1, and 1.875:1 should satisfy the broadest groups of Australian rice consumers. PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Rice, a high volume commodity can be cooked using a variety of methods and volumes of water. The findings of this research will help manufacturers market water‐to‐rice ratios, assisting consumers in identifying cooked rice for which they have a preference.