Proximate, Functional and Anti-Nutritional Properties of Boiled Ukpo Seed (Mucuna flagellipes) Flour
gUkpoh (<i>Mucuna flagellipes</i>) seed flour is one of the soup thickeners used in most rural Igbo-speaking communities of Southern Nigeria. Its preparation is usually associated with long cooking time which is required to soften the cotyledon before grinding as well as reduce the anti-nutritional components of the seed. This work was therefore aimed at determining the effect of boiling time on some functional properties and antinutritional properties of the ukpo seed flour. The result obtained showed that there were slight reductions in the protein, fat and ash content as boiling time increased probably due to leaching. All the functional properties analysed increased significantly (p .0.05) with increasing boiling time. The water absorption, oil absorption and emulsion capacities increased from values of 1.60 ml/g, 1.23 ml/g and 9.3 ml/g respectively at 0 minutes to 3.2 ml/g, 2.8 ml/g and 17.66 ml/g respectively at 60 minutes. The bulk density and swelling index also increased from 0.72 g/ml to 1.17cm3/cm3 and from 1.02 g/ml to 1.36 cm3/cm3 respectively. The oxalate, tannin, saponin, phenol and phytate contents decreased significantly (p .0.05) with increasing boiling time. The values at 60 minutes boiling time were 0.14%, 0.182%, 0.434%, 0.146% and 0.719% respectively. These results suggest that heat treatment improves the performance of the Ukpo flour in soup thickening while reducing to a large extent the anti-nutritional properties.
Keywords: Thickners, anti-nutritional, functional properties.
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