Enhancing Robusta coffee aroma by modifying flavour precursors in the green coffee bean.Food Chem. 2019 May 30; 281:8-17.FC
This study attempted to improve Robusta sensory properties by modifying the beans chemical composition. Building on our previous work, which modified bean pH through acid pre-treatment, a model system was developed where, sugar solutions (glucose, fructose, sucrose) were used to pre-treat Robusta coffee beans with the aim to modify the concentration/availability/location of these aroma precursors. Beans were then dried to equal water activity, subjected to equal roast intensity and ground to comparable particle size distributions. The treatment significantly impacted aroma generation during roasting leading to an altered level of pyrazines, furans, ketones, organic acid and heterocyclic nitrogen-containing compounds (p < 0.05). The optimum treatment was 15 g/100 g fructose. 80% treated Robusta could be blended with Arabica in coffee brew without significant aroma differences being perceived when compared to 100% Arabica brew. Furthermore the aroma of the fructose treated Robusta was more stable than Arabica over six weeks accelerated shelflife storage.