Evaluation of the chemical composition and sensory qualities of complementary foods prepared from germinated cowpea and sweet potato flour blends

  • Peter. I Akubor


Objective: To determine the effect of germination of cowpea on the chemical composition, functional and sensory properties of complementary foods prepared from cowpea and sweet potato four blends.
Materials and methods: Cowpea seeds were germinated for 54h, oven dried (50oC, 8h), milled and sieved. Flour was prepared from sweet potato tubers. The sweet potato flour (30 %) was used to substitute 70% of raw cowpea flour and germinated cowpea flour, respectively. The sweet potato flour, raw cowpea flour, germinated cowpea flour and the blends were evaluated for chemical composition and functional properties. The complementary foods were cooked and assessed for the sensory properties.
Results: Germination slightly decreased the protein, ash and fat contents of cowpea but not crude fiber and carbohydrate contents. The protein contents of the blends ranged between 18.1 and 19.1% .The carbohydrate contents of the blends varied slightly from 56.1-76 %.The calorie contents of the blends ranged between 352 and 356 kcal/100g while those the individual flours varied from 349.4 to 357.7 Kcal/100g. Germination increased the reconstitution index of cowpea flour but decreased the bulk density, water absorption capacity, viscosity and swelling capacity. Cooked sweet potato flour/ germinated cowpea flour complementary food had lower scores for taste, colour and flavour than the cooked sweet potato flour /raw cowpea flour  complementary food. However, the overall acceptability scores for the two complementary foods were not significantly different (p>0.05).
Conclusion: Germination reduced the bulk density, swelling and water absorption capacities of cowpea flour which was beneficial for use in the formulation of complementary foods. The complementary food containing germinated cowpea flour and sweet potato flour was the most preferred and was generally acceptable for use

Key words: Cowpea, Sweet potato, Germination, Complementary foods.

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eISSN: 0189-0913
print ISSN: 0189-0913