Food Technology and Biotechnology, Vol 35, No 1 (1997)

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The Use of the Mould Rhizopus oligosporus in Food Production

Boris Kovač, Peter Raspor


Filamentous fungi are used in food production for protecting the surface of article against spoilage, as well as for the improvement of taste and the biological or nutritional value. A variety of moulds are used in the preparation of fermented foods. However, Rhizopus oligosporus has been one of the most widely used and accepted moulds in fermentation of vegetal substrates. The fermented product made from soaked and cooked soybeans or cereal grains inoculated with a mould is called the tempeh. In the bioprocess, the substrate is bound together into a cake by dense white mycelium. An important function of mould in the fermentation process is the synthesis of enzymes that hydrolyse the components and contribute to the development of a desirable texture, flavour, and aroma of the product. Fermentation also eliminates antinutritional constituents, and the nutritional quality of the fermented product is thus improved. Tempeh is an attractive product from sensory, health and economical points of view.

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