Biology and Life Sciences
Received: 28 Apr 2018 , Published: 06 May 2018
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|1||D.G.C. Asanka Bandara|
Vegetables make up a major portion of the diet for human in various parts of the world, play a momentous ingredient in human nutrition and their postharvest losses range from 40-60% following harvest. Therefore, the development of Ready-to-cook (RTC) dehydrated vegetable mixture is one of the value additions to preserve the nutritional content of the vegetables. Accordingly, a study was conducted to develop a RTC dehydrated vegetable mixture by using five different vegetables such as carrot (Daucus carota), cabbage (Brassica oleracea), eggplant (Solanum melongena), green bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) and pumpkin (Cucurbita maxima). The dehydrated RTC vegetable mixtures were prepared to different levels 1.0%, 1.2%, 1.4% and 1.6% (w/w) of pumpkin pulp which served as binding agent while keeping other ingredients as constant. Physico-chemical parameters such as pH, Total soluble solids (TSS), moisture and fiber content were raged between 5.6-5.8, 3.8-5.7?Brix, 20.6-23.9 and 3.86 -6.89 % respectively. The TSS, moisture and fiber contents of formulated RTC dehydrated vegetable mixtures were significantly differed (p < 0.05) when the levels of added pumpkin puree in the mixture increased from 1.0 to 1.6 %. The microbiological study revealed that the prepared products were safe based on the total plate test, yeast, mould count and coliform tests. Results of sensory evaluation showed that the product can be consumed with high preference on a 5-point hedonic scale. Based on physico-chemical and sensory properties, the treatment with 1.2% of pumpkin was selected as the best combination compared to other tested treatments. The product was of having 22% of moisture and could be kept microbiologically safe for 5 weeks at ambient temperature of 30±1oC and 75% of RH.
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