Biochemical origin of browning during the processing of fresh Yam (Dioscorea spp.) into dried product.J Agric Food Chem 2005; 53(7):2552-7JA
This study was undertaken to follow the kinetics of polyphenoloxidase (PPO), peroxidase (POD), and phenolic compounds during yam blanching at different temperatures and after drying and to identify by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) the main phenolic compounds present in yam products. PPO activity was 50% higher in nonprocessed freeze-dried Florido (Dioscorea alata) than in nonprocessed freeze-dried Deba (Dioscorea rotundata). It decreased progressively during blanching. Forty-five percent of PPO activity remained after 50 min of blanching at 60 or 65 degrees C, whereas the POD activity dropped sharply to less than 20% of the initial activity after 10 min of blanching, whatever the blanching temperature. No anthocyanidins could be detected by HPLC at 520 nm in nonprocessed freeze-dried yam. Flavanols with a maximum absorption wavelength (lambda(max)) at 280 nm and cinnamic acid compounds with 320 nm lambda(max) were detected. Catechin was identified as the major flavanol with concentrations ranging from 0.26 to 0.41 microM g(-)(1) depending on cultivar. One cinnamic compound, ferulic acid, was identified and assessed in both cultivars (0.03-0.04 microM g(-)(1)). Total phenol, flavanol, and cinnamic contents decreased during blanching independently of temperature whereas some unresolved peaks were detected by HPLC in dried product. The latter was probably due to the consumption of coloring precursors and the appearance of polymerized or complex colored products.