Enrichment of Bread with Nutraceutical-Rich Mushrooms

Mushroom is widely known by its valuable bioactive compounds due to their high protein, fiber, vitamin, and phenolic compounds. It would be desirable and beneficial to consume the mushroom-related food products in daily diet. 

Mushrooms can be incorporated into foods in a whole or chopped form. Alternatively, specific bioactive fractions can be isolated from mushrooms using appropriate processing methods to create functional ingredients . However, it is important that any mushroom-based bioactive product added to a food does not adversely affect its processing or its quality attributes, such as appearance, texture, or shelf-life.

To maximize their potential health benefits, it would be advantageous to incorporate bioactive mushroom-based ingredients into stable food products that are consumed by a large segment of the general population. Thus, the enrichment of bread with mushroom powder would be helpful and attractive to provide people and the food industry with nutraceutical-rich product.

In a recent study, researchers tried to examine the impact of a bioactive mushroom extract (mushroom flour) on the physical properties and quality attributes of wheat dough and bread. In particular, they focused on the influence of mushroom flour incorporation on the rheological properties of wheat doughs, because dough rheology is known to influence bread processing and quality .


They added powdered Auricularia auricula, a widely consumed edible mushroom, into bread products, and measured the rheological and structural properties of wheat dough and bread when supplemented with 0% to 10% (w/w) A. auricula flour. Supplementation of wheat doughs with A. auricula flour increased the peak viscosity and enhanced their water holding capacity, while  lowered the gelatinization temperature. Rapid viscosity analysis showed that peak and final viscosities of the blended flour (wheat flour with A. auricula flour) were higher than wheat flour alone. However, dough stability and elastic modulus were reduced by blending wheat flour with A. auricula flour. SEM observation showed that doughs with up to 5% (w/w) A. auricula flour had acceptable gluten network microstructure. However, characterization of the quality attributes of bread indicated that incorporation of A. auricula flour at levels >5% negatively impacted bread volume, height, texture, and appearance.

In future studies, they will  investigate the impact of supplementation of bread with this nutraceutical-rich mushroom flour on its sensory properties.

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