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EPRC is a leading institute in Europe for comparative research on public policy, with a particular focus on regional development policies. Spanning 30 European countries, EPRC research programmes have a strong emphasis on applied research and knowledge exchange, including the provision of policy advice to EU institutions and national and sub-national government authorities throughout Europe.

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Particle size distribution and compositional effects on textural properties and appearance of dark chocolates

Afoakwa, E.O. and Paterson, A. and Fowler, M. and Vieira, J. (2008) Particle size distribution and compositional effects on textural properties and appearance of dark chocolates. Journal of Food Engineering, 87 (2). pp. 181-190. ISSN 0260-8774

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Abstract

Particle size distribution (PSD) and composition in dark chocolate were varied and their effects on textural properties of molten and tempered chocolates determined using a TA.HD Plus Texture Analyzer. Surface colour was evaluated in terms of CIELAB parameters L*, C* and h° using a HunterLab Miniscan Colorimeter. Compositional parameters for particle size distribution were [D90 (>90% finer) of 18 μm, 25 μm, 35 μm and 50 μm], fat (25%, 30% and 35%) and lecithin (0.3% and 0.5%) contents. Results showed that PSD, fat and lecithin content significantly (P 0.05) influenced the textural parameters with significant interactions among factors. Particle size was inversely correlated with firmness (1235-173 g), consistency (50,410-7029 g s), cohesiveness (1594-262 g), index of viscosity (5737-1099 g s) and hardness (7062-5546 g) with chocolates containing 25% fat and 0.3% lecithin. With higher fat and lecithin contents, PSD influence was reduced. PSD and fat concentration inversely influenced all colour measurements (L*, C* and h°) of samples. High correlations (r = 0.71-1.00, P < 0.001) were observed between texture parameters and colour. It was concluded that PSD, fat and lecithin contents and their interactions were central to changes in textural properties and appearance during processing of dark chocolates.