Effect of fermentation and cooking on protein quality of maize (Zea mays L.) cultivars


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Maize like other cereals shows qualitative and quantitative deficiency in protein content. Efforts were made to correct this by fortification, supplementation and fermentation. Two maize cultivars, Hudeiba 1 and Mugtama 45, were used to study the effect of fermentation followed by cooking on their protein quality. Maize flour was fermented for 32 h; samples were withdrawn at 8 h intervals. Results indicated that the proteins fractions albumins plus globulins were significantly (P < 0.05) increased in the fermented doughs. This is an indication of improvement in the protein quality of maize. Cooking resulted in significant (P < 0.05) changes in protein solubility. The essential amino acids particularly lysine increased from 1.82 to 2.06 and from 1.88 to 2.60 g/100 g (i.e. an increase of 11.6% and 27.7%) for Hudeiba 1 and Mugtama 45, respectively. The in vitro protein digestibility of cooked samples decreased significantly (P < 0.05); however, the negative effects of cooking were lower than those of unfermented cooked samples.