Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Flavor enhancers

Flavor enhancers
Flavorings either impart a particular flavor to foods or modify flavors already present. Flavor enhancers intensify flavor already present, especially when desirable flavors are relatively weak.

Monosodium glutamate is one of the beat known and most widely used flavor enhancers. This compound occurs naturally in many foods and in certain seaweed that was used for centuries as a flavor enhancer for soups and other foods. It is only within the last hundred years that the reason for the effectiveness of the seaweed was discovered to be MSG (Monosodium glutamate). The way in which MSG enhances flavor is mot fully understood.

While it is effective at relatively low levels (parts per thousand), there are other compounds called flavor potentiators that also enhance flavors but are extremely powerful, effective in parts per million and even per billion. These compounds have been identified as nucleotides and their effect is attributed to their synergistic properties (properties that intensify the effect of natural flavor components).
Flavor enhancers
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