Bubble-included chocolate: relating structure with sensory response
Haedelt, J., Beckett, S.T. and Niranjan, K. (2007) Bubble-included chocolate: relating structure with sensory response. Journal of Food Science, 72 (3). E138-E142. ISSN 0022-1147
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2007.00313.x
Bubbles impart a very unique texture, chew, and mouth feel to foods. However, little is known about the relationship between structure of such products and consumer response in terms of mouth-feel and eating experience. The objective of this article is to investigate the sensory properties of 4 types of bubble-containing chocolates, produced by using different gases: carbon dioxide, nitrogen, nitrous oxide, and argon. The structure of these chocolates were characterized in terms of (1) gas hold-up values determined by density measurements and (2) bubble size distribution which was measured by undertaking an image analysis of X-ray microtomograph sections. Bubble size distributions were obtained by measuring bubble volumes after reconstructing 3D images from the tomographic sections. A sensory study was undertaken by a nonexpert panel of 20 panelists and their responses were analyzed using qualitative descriptive analysis (QDA). The results show that chocolates made from the 4 gases could be divided into 2 groups on the basis of bubble volume and gas hold-up: the samples produced using carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide had a distinctly higher gas hold-up containing larger bubbles in comparison with those produced using argon and nitrogen. The sensory study also demonstrated that chocolates made with the latter were perceived to be harder, less aerated, slow to melt in the mouth, and having overall flavor intensity. These products were further found to be creamier than the chocolates made by using carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide; the latter sample also showed a higher intensity of cocoa flavor.