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Colour Stability of Wild Cactus Pear Juice
Abstract:Prickly pear (Opuntia spp) fruit has received renewed interest since it contains a betalain pigment that has an attractive purple colour for the production of juice. Prickly pear juice was prepared by homogenizing the fruit and treating the pulp with 48 g of pectinase from Aspergillus niger. Titratable acidity was determined by diluting 10 ml prickly pear juice with 90 ml deionized water and titrating to pH 8.2 with 0.1 N NaOH. Brix was measured using a refractometer and ascorbic acid content assayed spectrophotometrically. Colour variation was determined colorimetrically (Hunter L.a.b.). Hunter L.a.b. analysis showed that the red purple colour of prickly pear juice had been affected by juice treatments. This was indicated by low light values of colour difference meter (CDML*), hue, CDMa* and CDMb* values. It was observed that non-treated prickly pear juice had a high (colour difference meter of light) CDML* of 3.9 compared to juice treatments (range 3.29 to 2.14). The CDML* significantly (p<0.05) decreased as the juice was preserved. Spectrophotometric colour analysis showed that browning was low in all treated prickly juice samples as indicated by high values at 540 nm and low values at 476 nm (browning index). The brightness of prickly pear had been affected by acidification compared to other juice treatments. This study presents evidence that processing has a positive effect on the colour quality attribute that offers a clear advantage for the production of red-purple prickly pear juice.
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