Texture

The term texture describes a wide range of physical properties of the food product. A product of acceptable texture is usually synonymous with the quality of a product. Table 2 is a glossary of terminology used to describe textural attributes. Textured has been defined as "the attribute of a substance resulting from a combination of physical properties and perceived by senses of touch (including kinaes-thesis and mouthfeel), sight and hearing (6)." Texture as defined by the International Organization for Standardization is "all of the rheological and structural (geometric and surface) attributes of a food product perceptible by means of mechanical, tactile and where appropriate, visual and auditory receptors (7)." The following terms have been used to describe product characteristics of extrudates: tender, chewy, soft, tough, brittle, crunchy, crisp, smooth, fine, coarse, puffed, flaky, fibrous, and spongy. One or more of these terms may describe the same behavior.

A variety of properties have been used to quantify or measure the texture and functional properties of extrudates. Some of these are:

1. Bulk density, or density, defined as the mass per unit volume of the extrudate.

2. Breaking strength, defined as the stress required to shear a material. This stress is the ratio of the breaking force to the area of the material. In certain instances it is referred to as the force required to break or shear the sample. The breaking strength is an indirect measure of the stress-strain relationship of the extrudate. It is an important parameter that determines the final quality of the extrudate and can be related to such textural attributes as toughness, chewiness, crunchiness, and brittleness.

Table 2. List of Terms and Groups

Structure

Texture

Consistency

Terms of relating to the behavior of the material

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