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Low fat mayo - soy milk and gums could be the answer say Iranian researchers

By Jane Byrne , 16-Jan-2012

Soy milk can act as an egg yolk substitute in low-cholesterol low-fat mayonnaise, finds new research from Iran.

Writing in the journal Food Hydrocolloids, the authors said that they developed a formulation for egg-free mayonnaise based on a soy milk interaction with gums and emulsifiers to formulate a mayonnaise with similar characteristics to full fat mayonnaise.

Soy milk offers an alternative protein source to the egg yolk and also has emulsifying properties, added the authors, who are based at the Department of Food Science and Technology at the Ferdowsi University of Mashhad.

“Results revealed that the best mixture was the formulation containing 6.7% mono- & diglycerides, 36.7% guar gum and 56.7% xanthan gum,” said the food scientists.

Among mayonnaise ingredients, egg yolk is most critical for the stability of the product but one main problem with egg yolk is its high cholesterol content, and the researchers note various attempts by industry to develop low-cholesterol sauces with similar characteristics to real mayonnaise.

Vegetable protein isolates, note the authors, can be used effectively as food emulsion stabilizers because of their capacity to lower the interfacial tension between hydrophobic and hydrophilic components.

“Several vegetable proteins from soy, sunflower, pea, tomato seed, wheat, white lupin and faba bean have been successfully tested to stabilize oil-in-water (o/w) emulsions,” they explained.

The food scientists indicated their research was prompted by a gap in the literature in terms of earlier studies on the use of soy milk with gums and emulsifiers to completely replace egg yolk and reduce cholesterol and fat in mayonnaise

The authors said the mayonnaise samples for the study were prepared using a standard mixer and they contained soy milk, sunflower oil, vinegar (5% (w/v) acetic acid), salt, mustard powder, sugar, stabilizers, emulsifiers and water.

Results

They found that their low-fat mayonnaise samples showed a high stability and said this was as a result of the increased viscosity of the aqueous phase, “mainly due to adding the xanthan and guar gums to the soy milk that consequently slowed down oil droplets movement.”

“High xanthan gum levels gave low-fat mayonnaise products with more firmness, adhesiveness, and adhesive force values compared to products with no-added xanthan gum.,” said the team.

However, they found that the mayonnaise sample with xanthan gum did not receive high sensory scores. “Therefore, it should be used as a mixture with guar gum to improve sensory properties when optimum combination levels of gums are taken into account.”

The team said they also observed that the low-fat mayonnaises containing only mono- & diglycerides or samples with high levels of this emulsifier; did not perform well in terms of all measured parameters including stability, rheological characteristics, textural properties.

Source: Food Hydrocolloids
Published online ahead of print: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodhyd.2011.12.023
Title: Optimization of low cholesterol-low fat mayonnaise formulation: Effect of using soy milk and some stabilizer by a mixture design approach
Authors: V. Nikzade, M. Mazaheri Tehrani, M. Saadatmand-Tarzjan

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