BACKGROUND: This study focused on the contribution of soy protein isolate (SPI), in the absence or presence of monostearin (ME), to surface and interfacial properties as a function of protein concentration and pH, which is relevant to the physical stability of a variety of food systems.
RESULTS: An increase in protein content always yielded a rapid decrease in surface tension followed by an evolution towards an asymptotic value. Addition of ME gave rise to mixed SPI/ME films, although the interface became dominated by SPI above the concentration for interfacial saturation. The relative interfacial shear viscosity of SPI films showed a marked dependence on: aging time, which may be attributed to a reorganisation of protein species at the interface with some penetration of hydrophobic parts into the oil phase; shear forces, which may partially reverse this reorganisation, leading to shear-thickening behaviour; and pH, which is the key factor controlling which SPI species is predominant at the interface. The effect of adding ME also depends on pH, favouring a reinforcement of SPI/ME films only at low pH, at which 3S and 7S fractions are dominant.
CONCLUSION: The results obtained indicate that SPI shows excellent potential to favour stabilisation of air/water and oil/water interfaces in food systems. Copyright © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry