Microbiological Evaluation of Maize Pudding Produced From Maize, Bambara Groundnut, and African Yam Bean
The Objective of the Study
The objective of this study is to examine the microbiological evaluation of maize pudding produced from maize, Bambara groundnut, and African yam bean.
Maize (Zea may L.)
Maize (Zea mays L.) is the third most important cereal in the world after rice and wheat and ranks fourth after millet, sorghum and rice in Nigeria (FAO, 2009). Maize or corn is the most important cereal crop in sub Saharan Africa (Akingbala et al., 2007). It is mostly used and traded as a leading feed crop but is also an important food staple. In addition to food and feed, maize has a wide range of industrial applications ranging from food processing to manufacturing of ethanol (FAO, 2006).
Global statistics for cereal consumption indicate that the average total consumption in the African diet is 291.7g/person/day, including an average maize consumption of 106.2g/person/day (FAO, 2009). Maize is known and called by different vernacular names in Nigeria depending on locality like agbado, igbado or yangan (Yoruba); masara or dawarmasara (Hausa); ogbado or oka (Ibo); apaapa (Ibira); oka (Bini and Isha); ibokpot or ibokpot union (Efik) and igumapa (Yala) (FAO, 2002).
Origin of Maize
Maize is one of the oldest human-domesticated plants. Its origin is believed to date back to at least 7000 years ago when it was grown in the form of a wild grass called teosinte in Central Mexico. Recognizing its early potential as a major food crop, over time the Mesoamerican natives managed to improve the crop, by systematically selecting certain varieties for their desired traits. This process led to the gradual transformation of teosinte to its present day form known as maize, a name which is a likely derivative of “mahis”, meaning “source of life” for Tanio people, the natives known to have mastered its cultivation. Maize is also known as corn, which is the name that has come into common usage primarily because it is used in the United States, the world’s largest producer, consumer and exporter of maize.
Maize is an annual plant with high productivity which also enjoys exceptional geographic adaptability, an important property which has helped its cultivation to spread throughout the world. Its gradual expansion in the Americas by the Natives was rapidly propagated in the 16th century following the return of Columbus to Europe. Colonial conquests and trade played a central role in the spread of maize cultivation well beyond the European continent, to Africa and Far East Asia (FAO, 2006). There exist several hybrids of maize, each with their own specific properties and kernel characteristics; the most common ones include: dent (or field maize, used for livestock feeding and can be yellow or white), flint (or Indian maize, grown in Central and South America), and sweet (or green maize).
Depending on their colour and taste, maize grown around the world is generally categorized into two broad groups: yellow and white. Yellow maize constitutes the bulk of total world maize production and international trade (FAO, 2006). It is grown in most northern hemisphere countries where it is traditionally used for animal feed. White maize, which requires more favourable climatic conditions for growing, is produced in onlya handful of countries, the United States, Mexico and in southern Africa. White maize is generally considered a food crop. Market prices are usually higher for white maize compared to the yellow type but the premium can vary depending on local supply and demand conditions.
Chemical Composition of Maize
Generally, whole maize contains 362 Kcal/100g; 8.1% crude protein; 72% starch, 5% fat, 1.3% ash, 1.2% fiber; 60 ppm calcium, 35 ppm iron; 1.8 ppm Zinc; 3.9 ppm Thiamine; 2.0 ppm Riboflavin; 36ppm Niacin; 3.0ppm pyridoxine; 0.25 ppm folates; 241 mg/100g phosphrous; 0.16 ppm selenium (Bressani, 2002).
MATERIALS AND METHODS
Maize (Zea mays L), Bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranean), African yam bean (Sphenostylis stenocarpa), and Pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan (L.)) used in the research work was purchased from a local market in Owo, Ondo State. Other materials such as pepper, ripe plantain, salt, onions, palm oil etc were also purchased in the same market in Owo. The samples were processed in food processing laboratory and the chemical composition (proximate analysis) was carried out in the chemistry laboratory of Food Science and Technology, Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo, Ondo State.
Production of maize flour
Whole maize was dehusked and shelled from the cob. The grains were sorted out from plant debris, stones and other foreign materials, and were then washed in water to remove other tiny dirt particles that were present on the grains. The maize was divided into three (3), each undergoing different methods of preparation. The first maize was soaked for 48 hours (fermentation) while the second was soaked for 72 hours (3 days), lastly the third maize was washed, drained and covered till germination occurred. The grains that were soaked were drained and dried at 60oC in a hot air oven. The dried maize grains were then milled into flour using attrition mill, the germinated grain was dried at 60oC in hot air oven after which it was milled using attrition mill. The three samples of maize flour were kept for further analysis.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
Table 4.1: Microbiological analysis of elekute-ogede produced from African yam bean and Bambara groundnut
CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
This study has shown that microbiological qualities of maize pudding were not significantly affected by Bambara groundnut and African yam bean enrichment. Conclusively, Bambara groundnut and African yam bean can be added to maize to produce a maize pudding of high nutritive and enhance functional properties.
From the result obtained in the microbiological evaluation of maize pudding produced from maize, Bambara groundnut and African yam bean. It is recommended that incorporation of Bambara groundnut has higher nutritive benefits at the percentage rate of 80:20 ( 80% Bambara groundnut and 20% Germ) than the maize pudding fortified with African yam bean because it has the highest number of colony due to its nutritive value.
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