Protein Enrichment of Wheat Bread with Microalgae: Microchloropsis gaditana, Tetraselmis chui and Chlorella vulgaris
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Cell wall disrupted and dried Microchloropsis gaditana (Mg), Tetraselmis chui (Tc) and Chlorella vulgaris (Cv) microalgae biomasses, with or without ethanol pre‐treatment, were added to wheat bread at a wheat flour substitution level of 12%, to enrich bread protein by 30%. Baking performance, protein quality and basic sensory properties were assessed. Compared to wheat, Mg, Tc and Cv contain higher amounts of essential amino acids and their incorporation markedly improved protein quality in the bread (DIAAS 57–66 vs 46%). The incorporation of microalgae reduced dough strength and bread volume and increased crumb firmness. This was most pronounced for Cv and Tc but could be improved by ethanol treatment. Mg gave adequate dough strength, bread volume and crumb structure without ethanol treatment. To obtain bread of acceptable smell, appearance, and colour, ethanol treatment was necessary also for Mg as it markedly reduced the unpleasant smell and intense colour of all algae breads. Ethanol treatment reduced the relative content of lysine, but no other essential amino acids. However, it also had a negative impact on in vitro protein digestibility. Our results show that Mg had the largest potential for protein fortification of bread, but further work is needed to optimize pre‐processing and assess consumer acceptance.