Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Tahergorabi, Dr. Reza

Abstract

Oat bran is a gluten-free dietary fiber that may reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes. Most Americans consume less than half the recommended daily amount of fiber. Surimi seafood, which is also called “imitation crabmeat”, is not currently produced with fiber, nor has the effect of fiber on the physicochemical properties of surimi gels been thoroughly studied. The addition of fiber to surimi seafood would allow manufacturers to market added nutritional benefits. The purpose of this study was to determine the physicochemical properties (proximate composition, pH, texture, color properties, water holding capacity, and cooking loss) of Alaska pollock surimi gels formulated with variable levels of oat bran while maintaining constant levels of protein and water. Alaska pollock surimi gels were prepared with final moisture content of 78%. Oat bran and silicon dioxide (w/w) (inert filler) were added in inverse concentrations to develop treatments of 0% (control), 2%, 4%, 6%, or 8% oat bran. Texture was measured using texture profile analysis and the Kramer shear test. Color was tested by measuring L*, a*, and b* tristimulus color values. Results showed that for the proximate analyses (ash, moisture, and protein content), there were significant differences (P<0.05) in ash and protein content between the surimi gels containing oat bran and the control. The pH values of the treated samples with oat bran showed no significant (P>0.05) difference compared to the control. These results showed that pH values were not affected by the addition of oat bran to the surimi gels. For texture properties, hardness and Kramer shear force increased significantly with increased additional oat bran (P < 0.05). Surimi gels with oat bran showed slight but significant reductions (P < 0.05) in whiteness, due to significant decreases (P < 0.05) in L* and increases in b* values. The water holding capacity increased significantly (P<0.05) with all the treatments compared to the control. Cooking loss was reduced significantly (P<0.05) at 2%, 6%, and 8% oatbran; the lowest cooking loss occurred with 8% oat bran. These results indicated that oat bran can be incorporated into surimi products without compromising quality, which may be useful to manufacturers for marketing surimi products with added health benefits.

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