Soy innovations in bread, beverages

by Jeff Gelski
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Researchers have made progress in using soy as an ingredient in baked foods, particularly in par-baked flatbread, and in beverages, particularly in clear beverages.

Researchers at The Ohio State University in Columbus have focused on soy’s use in bread, pretzels and micro-wavable pocket-type flat dough over the past few years. A study on par-baked flatbread appeared on-line Feb. 20 in Food Research International. Although soy altered the texture and water properties of the flatbread, the formulations were more stable during frozen storage.

Flatbread was formulated with soy at zero, 10%, 20% and 26% by weight of added ingredients. After the dough partially was baked to about 75% of completion, it was stored at minus-18 degrees Celsius for 14 days. Researchers thawed and analyzed the dough for moisture content and texture properties such as hardness. Freezing increased the hardness and chewiness and decreased the springiness of par-baked wheat bread, but 10% soy bread did not show a change in chewiness, hardness or springiness upon freezing. Data suggest adding soy increased mobility of the water.

When adding soy to a baked product, shelf life may become an issue because the fatty acids in soy oxidize quicker, said Mariano Gascon, vice-president of research and development for Wixon, Inc., St. Francis, Wis.

Fibrim 1270, a soy fiber, has shelf life benefits, said Rosa Sanchez, group leader, Food Science & Technology, for The Solae Co., St. Louis. Solae conducted studies with AIB International, Manhattan, Kas., in 2009 that involved flour tortillas and white pan bread. Adding Fibrim 1270 at a 2% level (based on flour), with the addition of an extra 6% water (based on flour), brought added moistness to the products, which was maintained throughout the shelf life. The tortillas were evaluated for 12 weeks and the bread for 21 days. A freeze/thaw study was conducted with the tortilla products.

Fibrim 1270 has water-binding capabilities to keep more water in the baked product throughout the baking process.

“Later, in the microwave, the water helps to keep the wheat gluten in the product hydrated,” Ms. Sanchez said. “This reduces the drying and hardening that typically occur when microwaving baked goods. Adding even a low level of isolated soy protein can enhance this effect.”

Soy proteins may cloud clear beverages and add an unwanted taste.

“The branched chain amino acid structure of protein molecules means it can often be difficult to create a smooth-tasting beverage, and, in clear beverages, traditional whey and soy proteins cloud and give a slightly ‘beany’ taste or bitter flavor,” said Courtney B. Kingery, marketing and customer development manager for ADM NA Oilseeds, Decatur, Ill. “In response to protein-fortified beverages becoming more mainstream, the ingredients used in those beverages have advanced to meet mainstream taste and sensory preferences.

“For example, ADM has recently completed an upgrade to our isolated soy protein plant to decrease processing times, and the result is a more neutral tasting protein. We launched Clarisoy 100 isolated soy protein to meet the needs of beverage manufacturers looking to add protein fortification to low pH beverages while maintaining transparency.”

Archer Daniels Midland Co., Decatur, in 2011 signed an agreement with Burcon NutraScience Corp., Vancouver, B.C., to manufacture, market and sell Clarisoy isolated soy protein. Clarisoy 100 is 100% soluble in beverage applications with a pH below 4.0. Potential applications include sport nu-trition beverages, citrus-based drinks, fruit-flavored beverages, fruit-juice blends, lemonades, powdered beverage mixes and fortified waters.

New soy protein isolates in general are becoming more stable at different pH levels, Mr. Gascon said.
“They are a lot cleaner,” he said. “They don’t have as intense ‘beany’ notes.”

He added a need still may exist for flavor maskers such as Mag-nifique from Wixon.

The addition of soy protein may build structure in a beverage because of its emulsifying capabilities and stabilizing attributes, said David Sabbagh, senior group leader, Food Science & Technology for The Solae Co.

“There are some factors that can make it harder to stabilize the soy and other ingredients without sedimentation such as extreme fat or carbohydrate levels, targeted pH or heat treatment,” Mr. Sabbagh said. “By fully understanding the sensory and flavor attributes of soy protein, Solae is able to work through these issues to achieve the desired mouthfeel, flavor and texture of the beverage.”

Adding soy protein to a beverage typically will make the beverage’s appearance more opaque, he said.
“Producing clear beverages with a significant level of soy remains a challenge,” Mr. Sabbagh said. “However, modifications to the process and product can reduce that impact. Within the industry there are a number of technologies in development that are working toward an increased transparency in soy protein beverages.”

Adding 6.25 grams of soy protein per serving to any food or beverage may allow the product to qualify for a Food and Drug Administration health claim about soy protein and the risk of coronary heart disease.
“In a beverage we can easily add 6.25 grams of soy protein per serving — this allows the health claim positioning,” Mr. Sabbagh said. “Increasing inclusion to 10 grams per serving allows a brand to claim that the beverage contains an ‘excellent source of protein.’”
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