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Physicochemical Properties of Wheat-Cocoyam Composite Flour Enriched with Palm Weevils (Rhynchophorous phoenicis) and Sensory Qualities of Cakes Produced from the Composites

D. C. Arukwe
V. C. Ezeocha
C. K. Okolo


This study investigated some quality attributes of cake produced with cocoyam-wheat flour blends enriched with edible palm weevils. Flours were produced from wheat, cocoyam and palm weevils and proportioned and designated as 100:0:0 (AA), 90:10:0 (AB), 90:5:5 (AC), 80:15:5 (AD), 70:20:10 (AE), 60:30:10 (AF) and 50:40:10 (AG). The proximate composition and functional properties of the wheat-cocoyam-palm weevil flour blends as well as the proximate composition, antinutrients and sensory properties of the cakes were evaluated using standard methods. The result of the functional properties depicted a significant (p<0.05) increase in the emulsion capacity (29.02 – 32.15 %), swelling index (1.26 – 1.45) and gelation temperature (70.0 – 83.5oC), and reduction in bulk density (0.714 – 0.619 g/ml) as the level of addition of cocoyam and palm weevils flours increased. Proximate analysis of the wheat-cocoyam-palm weevil flour blends yielded a significant (p<0.05) rise in moisture, ash, fat, crude fibre, and protein and a decrease in carbohydrates. The cakes recorded a significant (p<0.05) increase in protein, fat, crude fibre, ash, and reduction in carbohydrate contents with increased addition of cocoyam and palm weevil flours. The anti-nutrients were determined to have low values and posed no risk to human health. Sensory evaluation results showed that cakes produced from flour blends were accepted by panellists. Therefore the addition of cocoyam flour and palm weevil powder to wheat flour products is recommended for boosting the nutrient density as well as enhancing the nutrition status and health of consumers.