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Reducing acrylamide levels in french fries
The process in which par-fried potato strips are prepared may affect the formation of acrylamide, a probable human carcinogen, U.S. and British researchers say.
The findings, published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, identified potential ways of reducing levels of acrylamide including minimizing the ratio of fructose to glucose in cut potato strips might reduce the amount of acrylamide that ends up in the french fries.
Donald S. Mottram of the University of Reading in England and colleagues said acrylamide formation in fried potato products was inevitable, but their research aimed to better understand the chemistry involved, and to use computer models to determine how to minimize acrylamide levels in practice.
The special feature of this approach is that, for the first time, it has been possible to link changes in natural potato components — glucose, fructose, amino acids, moisture — occurring during preparation and cooking with the extent of acrylamide formation.
The commercial process, which includes potato selection and sorting, cutting, blanching, sugar augmentation, drying, frying and freezing, in combination with final cooking, generates the color, texture and flavor that consumers expect in french fries sold in fast-food restaurants.
Copyright 2012 by United Press International