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article imageScience of bread making reveals the secrets of taste and aroma

By Tim Sandle     May 21, 2017 in Science
Paris - The art of bread making may be well established but there remains a lot to learn in terms of reproducing artisanal bread on a mass scale. This is where science comes in and new research reveals more about taste and aroma.
The smell of bread is said, along with freshly brewed coffee, to be one of the most enticing sensory experiences (a U.K. based survey found that the smell of freshly baked bread was the nation’s favorite aroma). In recent years there has been a growing demand for freshly prepared foods, as shown with the growth of “farmer’s markets” and bread, such as an authentic French baguette, is always a popular item.
Food researchers have identified that a crisp crust is a must for good tasting bread. Why is this? Here the researchers have reported how the balance of crumb and crust structure affect aroma. The aroma of food affects the taste. To our brains, "taste" is actually a fusion of a food's taste, smell and touch into a single sensation
The Marraqueta bread is a staple in the diet of South American people. This type of loaf can be neat...
The Marraqueta bread is a staple in the diet of South American people. This type of loaf can be neatly divided into four pieces with the hands.
Fernando Ossandón
Reported by the American Chemical Society, the aroma of well-made and good tasting bread is essential for the taste. This is because the chewing food releases molecules that waft up into our mouths. These interact with olfactory receptors and this goes onto influence how each individual perceives what they are eating.
Food technologists think that understanding this dynamic more fully is the key to unlocking improvements to the taste of many products, including bread. Taking the baguette as the food item for further study, researchers, led by Dr. Anne Saint-Eve at the Université Paris-Saclay have carried out studies to examined how the texture of bread affects the aroma when the bread is chewed and then how texture and aroma combine to influence the taste.
Bread  produced locally from a mill near Ware in Hertfordshire. Thick crusts and soft chewy dough in...
Bread, produced locally from a mill near Ware in Hertfordshire. Thick crusts and soft chewy dough inside.
To study this, the French food scientists used three study participants. Each person was asked to eat samples of nine different baguettes. Each bread product had been prepared to have a different crumb and crust density. This led to variations across the nine baguettes in terms of water content and the overall elasticity.
As well as each subject reporting on the ‘taste’ they experienced the scientists undertook an analysis of volatile organic compounds that were exhaled through the "nose spaces" of the three volunteers. In addition, the researchers measured the chewing activity of each person as an indicator of how firm the bread was and also how brittle the crust was. It was found that the greater the rate of chewing then the greater the release of aroma molecules was.
It is hoped the findings will assist food scientists in the creation of better types of bread. The research is published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, which the paper by the food technologists titled “Effect of Bread Crumb and Crust Structure on the in Vivo Release of Volatiles and the Dynamics of Aroma Perception.”
More about Crust, Bread, Aroma, Yeast, Taste
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