Effect of drying method on the quality and storability of ‘egusi\' melon seeds (Colocynthis citrullus L.)
AbstractThe effect of sun-, oven-, smoke- and solar drying on the physicochemical properties and storability of melon seeds (Colocynthis citrullus L.) was investigated. Oven drying most significantly reduced the moisture content, followed by smoke drying and solar drying in decreasing order. The proximate composition of seeds was not significantly affected by the drying methods, but panelists most preferred the oven-dried seeds in the sensory analysis. Oven- and smoke dried seeds had the lowest incidence of diseased seeds, moisture content and level of Aspergillus spp. infestation and also recorded the highest seed germination and oil content in stores. The peroxide values and percentage free fatty acids were lowest in oven dried seeds, followed by the smoke dried seeds and the lowest in sun dried seeds. Thus, oven- and smoke drying could be used to dry melon seeds, particularly during the first season harvest when sun drying often proves difficult.
Key words: Drying method, melon seeds, quality, storability.
African Journal of Biotechnology Vol. 4 (8), pp. 799-803