FOOD TRANSFORMATION DURING COOKING
Learning outcomes of the course unit
To illustrate the main properties of food components, their reactivity and their molecular transformations during the technological processes of cooking and preservation.
The final examination should be preceded by Organic Chemistry.
Course contents summary
Introduction. What is Food Chemistry?
Water. Water structure. Water interactions with food components and matrices. Bound water, water activity (aw).
Carbohydrates. Monosaccharides: structure and reactivity. Oligosaccharides. Reactions of sugars in acid and alkaline environment and with temperature. Maillard reaction. Markers of thermal degradation, HMF, lactulose. Polisaccharides. Amylose. Modified amylose and amylose syrups. Pectins. Polisaccharides from algae. Cellulose, emicellulose and fibre. Gums. Sugar fermentation: alcoholic beverages.
Lipids. Classification. Fatty acids: structure and occurrence. Essential fatty acids. Reactions of unsaturated fatty acids. Hydrogenation, margarine and trans fatty acids. Oxidative degradation and rancidity. Antioxidants. Triglycerides. Melting and crystallization. Cocoa butter and chocolate. Interesterification. Sterols. Polar lipids. Vegetable oils, milk fat, cream and butter. Synthetic emulsifiers. Phytosterols. Molecular markers of thermal and oxidative degradation.
Proteins. Amino acids. Protein structure. Essential amino acids and protein quality. Technological properties of proteins. Proteinaceous foods: milk, cheese, eggs, meat, bread. Markers of protein and amino acid thermal degradation, isopeptides, lysinoalanine, furosine, pyrazines.
Food colours. Molecular basis of colour. Colour measurement methods. Chlorofills. Carotenoids. Anthocyanins. Betalains. Melanins. Natural food colorants. Synthetic colorants.
Vitamins. Classification. Properties and reactivity of vitamins in food.
Additives and undesirables: hints. Classification. Main chemical properties of the different classes of food additives (preservatives, antioxidants, emulsifiers, etc.). Toxicology hints. Toxic substances of natural origin and from processing.
P. Cabras, A. Martelli, “Chimica degli alimenti”, Ed. Piccin, Padova (2004)
Tom P. Coultate, “La Chimica degli Alimenti”, Ed. Zanichelli, Bologna (2004)H. D. Belitz, W. Grosch, P. Schieberle, "Food Chemistry", Ed. Springer Verlag, Berlin, Germany (2005)
The course is based on theoretical lessons. The final oral examination is based on the discussion of the theoretical aspects and of an original paper.