MSC project - Optimizing the texture of plant-based meat analogue using enzymes during high moisture extrusion processing
This project is to create novel plant-based meat analogues with improved textural characteristics by applying enzymes during high moisture extrusion processing. The modification effect of enzymes on protein fractions and/or fiber fraction will be investigated.
Currently, the food industry tends to replace animal protein due to the shifting consumers trend towards healthy dietary choices, religious preferences (e.g., vegetarian), as well as towards more environmentally sustainability. Plant-based proteins are therefore important alternatives to protein derived from meat. High moisture extrusion cooking can be applied to impart plant proteins to a fibrous texture, and high moisture meat analogue can provide a more sustainable alternative to animal proteins with only a fraction of the environmental impact.
Soy and pea proteins are widely used as raw materials, due to their high availability and texturization properties. The response will vary depending on the protein source, processing condition and the presence of fibers and/or starch in the raw material.
The aim of this project is to evaluate the effect on textural properties by enzymatic modification like hydrolysis and/or crosslinking of soy and pea proteins prior to extrusion. Both theoretical work (e.g. literature review) and practical tasks (e.g. experiments and analyses) will be included in this project. Enzymes selection and optimization for degree of hydrolysis, different extrusion effects (extruder barrel temperature and cooling temperature), and evaluation of final products (hardness, chewiness and tensile strength; SDS-PAGE and/or SEM) will be studied.
Contact person / supervisor:
René Lametsch, Hong Wang