Food Science and Technology Project Topics

Physicochemical, Mineral and Sensory Properties of Cookies Produced From Wheat, Unripe Plantain and Soy Flour Blends

Physicochemical, Mineral and Sensory Properties of Cookies Produced From Wheat, Unripe Plantain and Soy Flour Blends

Physicochemical, Mineral and Sensory Properties of Cookies Produced From Wheat, Unripe Plantain and Soy Flour Blends

Chapter One

Aims and Objective of the Study

            The aims and objective of this study includes the following

  1. Production of wheat, unripe plantain and soy flour and blending of the flour in different proportion
  2. Production of cookies from the flour produced
  3. Physicochemical (proximate), mineral and sensory determination of cookies produced from the flour blends.



Overview of Wheat (Triticum aestivum L)

            Wheat (Triticum aestivum L) is the most extensively grown cereal crop in the world, covering about 237 million hectares annually, accounting for a total of 420 million tonnes (Isitor et al., 2000; Langer and Hill, 2001; Olabanji et al., 2004), and for at least one-fifth of man’s calorie intake (Ohiagu et al., 2007). Wheat is an annual grass growing to between ½ to 1 ¼ meters in height, with a long stalk that terminates in a tightly formed cluster of plump kernels enclosed by a beard of bristly spikes (Smith, 2010).

It is grown all over the world for its highly nutritious and useful grain, as one of the top three most produced crops, along with corn and rice. It is used in the production of bread, biscuits, feeds, confectionary, amongst many, utilization. The crop, which has been cultivated for over 10,000 years probably, originates in the Fertile Crescent, along with other staple crops. However, ancestral wheat may have looked very different from what we presently have today, with much smaller kernels. Early domesticators of wheat obviously wanted to select for plants with particularly large kernels, since more nutrient could be eked out from each stalk.

Cultivation of Wheat in Nigeria

Wheat has been cultivated in Nigeria for centuries (Ohiagu et al., 2007; Olugbemi et al., 2009). Ample evidence exists to show that wheat has been cultivated in Nigeria as early as 200BC, although the currently cultivated varieties are relatively recent introduction (Olabanji et al., 2004). However, Nigeria’s domestic wheat production has remained at a very low level in spite of the ever – rising demand for the crop. The constraints to the cultivation of wheat in most wheat growing areas in Nigeria include climatic requirements, appropriate agronomic practices and preference for the cultivation of vegetables (Ohiagu et al., 2007). Development of improved agronomic practices in respect of land preparation, planting, nutrition, water management, crop protection, harvest and postharvest technology have been the major areas where researchers have concentrated their efforts.

With a projected population of 137.86 million people in 1997 (Ohiagu et al., 2007), wheat consumption in Nigeria was projected to reach 1.5 million metric tonnes, with domestic production lagging behind demands. Decades later, the prospect of meeting local wheat demands seem unlikely, particularly with the demise of most River Basin Development Projects (Olabanji et al., 2004). To complicate issues, yields obtained on farmers’ plots have often lagged behind world average. Wheat cultivation in Nigeria up to 1985 was about 66, 000 tonnes (Olabanji et al., 2004), but rose to about 400, 000 to 600, 000 tonnes from a total land area of 215, 000 hectares between 2008 and 2009 with an average field yield of 2t ha-1 after ban was imposed on wheat importation. Average farm yield is still quite below what exist in the UK or the world average

Wheat as an important industrial crop is the main raw material in feed mills, with bread, cake, biscuit, pasta, spaghetti, semovita, macaroni, containing reasonable amounts of wheat. The offal is used in compounding life stock feeds. After wheat harvest, the grain is separated from the stalks and chaff. The wheat stalks are used in a variety of applications: mulch, construction material, and as animal bedding. As food, wheat contributes more protein and calories to the diet than any other crop and world trade in wheat far exceeds the contributions of other grains put together.

Classification of Wheat

Wheats are classified based on species, commercial types, and growth habit. Based on these, there are sixteen species, two commercial types: bread (Triticum aestivum) and macaroni or Duran wheat (Triticum durun); and three growth habits (winter habit wheat, spring wheat and facultative wheat). Winter wheat lies dormant during a winter freeze.

Major cultivated species of wheat:

  • Common wheat or Bread wheat (T. aestivum): A hexaploid species that is the most widely cultivated in the world.
  • Durum (T. durum): The only tetraploid form of wheat widely used today, and the second most widely cultivated wheat.
  • Einkorn (T. monococcum): A diploid species with wild and cultivated variants. Domesticated at the same time as emmer wheat, but never reached the same importance.
  • Emmer (T. dicoccum): A tetraploid species, cultivated in ancient times but no longer in widespread use.
  • Spelt (T. spelta): Another hexaploid species cultivated in limited quantities.

Harvested wheat grain that enters trade is classified according to grain properties for the purposes of the commodities market. Wheat buyers use the classifications to help determine which wheat to purchase as each class has special uses. Wheat producers determine which classes of wheat are the most profitable to cultivate with this system.

Nutritional Content of Wheat

Globally, there is no doubt that the number of people who rely on wheat for a substantial part of their diet amounts to several billions. Therefore, the nutritional importance of wheat proteins should not be underestimated, particularly in less developed countries where bread, noodles and other products (e.g. bulgar, couscous) may provide a substantial proportion of the diet. Wheat provides nearly 55% of carbohydrate and 20% of the food calories. It contains carbohydrate 78.10%, protein 14.70%, fat 2.10%, minerals 2.10% and considerable proportions of vitamins (thiamine and vitamin-B) and minerals (zinc, iron). Wheat is also a good source of traces minerals like selenium and magnesium, nutrients essential to good health (Adams et al., 2002; Fraley, 2003). Wheat grain precisely known as caryopsis consists of the pericarp or fruit and the true seed. In the endosperm of the seed, about 72% of the protein is stored, which forms 8-15% of total protein per grain weight. Wheat grains are also rich in pantothenic acid, riboflavin and some minerals, sugars etc. The barn, which consists of pericarp testa and aleurone, is also a dietary source for fiber, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, and niacin in small quantities.

The kernel of wheat is a storehouse of nutrients essential to the human diet. Endosperm is about 83% of the kernel weight; it is the source of white flour. The endosperm contains the greatest share of the protein in the whole kernel, carbohydrates, iron as well as many B-complex vitamins, such as riboflavin, niacin, and thiamine. Bran is about 14.5% of the kernel weight (Blechl et al., 2007; Drankham et al.,, 2003). Bran is included in whole-wheat flour and is available separately. Of the nutrients in whole wheat, the bran contains a small amount of protein, larger quantities of the B-complex vitamins listed above, trace minerals, and indigestible cellulose material called dietary flour. Wheat germ is the embryo of the wheat kernel. The germ or embryo of the wheat is relatively rich in protein, fat and several of the B-vitamins (Adams et al., 2002). The outer layers of the endosperm and the aleurone contain a higher concentration of protein, vitamins and phytic acid than the inner endosperm. The inner endosperm contains most of the starch and protein in the grain. It is separated from wheat being milled for flour.





Wheat (Triticum spp), Unripe plantain (Musa spp) and Soybean (Glycine max) used in this research work were purchased from a local market in Owo, Ondo State. The Wheat, Unripe plantain and Soybean were purchased wholesome, that is, it was free from rot and had no physical damage. The milk powder, sugar, margarine, baking powder, flavor and other ingredients used for biscuits production were also purchased from the same local market in Owo, Ondo state. The biscuit produced from Wheat, Plantain and Soybean was processed in the processing laboratory of Food Science and Technology. Equipment, chemicals (reagents) and other facilities used in the research work were obtained from the laboratories of the Department of Food Science and Technology, Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo, Ondo State.


Wheat Flour Preparation

Wheat flour was produced as described by Adegunwa et al. (2015) (Fig. 1). The Wheat grains were dried sorted and cleaned to remove stones, dirt, and infested grains. The cleaned Wheat was then milled using a laboratory hammer mill and allowed to pass through a 250-micrometer mesh.




Table 4.1: Proximate composition of cookies from wheat, green plantain and soy flour blends




This research has revealed that proximate, mineral and sensory composition of cookies  produced from wheat flour, green plantain flour, soy flour blends are comparable to those produced from wheat flour only and hence can be substituted for the production of cookies. The research has also shown that the most suitable blending ratio for the production of cookies from wheat, green plantain and soy flour blends is 40% wheat flour, 30% green plantain and 30% soy flour and 100% wheat because they were more preferable during the sensory analysis. Furthermore, the cookies produced from the composite flour of wheat, green plantain and soy flour blend was acceptable by the sensory panelist.


It is therefore recommended that composite cookies of acceptable quality be produced by substituting wheat flour with green plantain flour and soy flour at levels not exceeding 30% each. Regular supply, improvement of product strategy and quality, publicity and introduction of health claims on the nutritional quality of the product in terms of proximate and mineral should be carried out in order to enhance the acceptability of the cookies.


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