Flavor chemistry of blue cheese Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/kw52jc73q

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  • Numerous attempts have been made to identify the flavor compounds in Blue cheese, however, duplication of Blue cheese flavor has not yet been accomplished. Therefore, it was desirable to make a qualitative and quantitative investigation of Blue cheese flavor compounds and to study the effect of certain microorganisms on Blue cheese flavor. The aroma fraction of Blue cheese was isolated by centrifugation of the cheese and molecular distillation of the recovered fat. The volatiles were separated by gas chromatography on packed columns containing polar and nonpolar phases and by temperature programmed capillary column gas chromatography. Relative retention time data and fast scan mass spectral analysis of the capillary column effluent were used to identify compounds in the aroma fraction. Compounds positively identified were as follows: 2-pentanone, 2-hexanone, 2-heptanone, 2-octanone, 2-nonanone, 2-decanone, 2-undecanone, 2-tridecanone, 2-propanol, 2-pentanol, 2-heptanol, 2-octanol, 2-nonanol, methyl butanoate, methyl hexanote, methyl octanoate, methyl decanoate, methyl dodecanoate, ethyl formate, ethyl acetate, ethyl butanoate, ethyl hexanoate, ethyl octanoate, ethyl decanoate, ethanal, 3-methyl butanal, 2-methyl butanol, 3-methyl butanol, 1-pentanol, benzene, and toluene. Tentatively identified compounds included acetone, delta-octalactone, delta-decalactone, methyl acetate, isopropyl hexanoate, 3-methylbutyl butanoate, pentyl hexanoate, ethyl-2-methylnonanoate, isopropyl decanoate, furfural, 2-methyl propanal, methanol, ethanol, 2-phenylethanol, cresyl methyl ether, dimethylcyclohexane, diacetyl, methyl mercaptan, and hydrogen sulfide. A combination of liquid-liquid column chromatography and gas-liquid chromatography was utilized to quantitate the major free fatty acids in Blue and Roquefort cheese samples. The average concentration (mg acid/kg cheese) in three Blue cheese samples was as follows: 2:0, 826; 4:0, 1, 448; 6:0, 909; 8:0, 771; 10:0, 1,318; 12:0, 1,588; 14:0, 5,856; 16:0, 12,789; 18:0, 4,243; 18:1, 12,455; 18:2, 1,072; 18:3, 987. Roquefort cheese was found to be proportionately more abundant in 8:0 and 10:0 acids and low in 4:0 acid compared to Blue cheese. No formic, propionic, or isovaleric acid was detected in any of the cheeses tested. A quantitative procedure involving adsorption chromatography, liquid-liquid chromatography and absorption spectrophotometry was used to isolate and measure the concentration of the C₃, C₅, C₇, C₉, and C₁₁ methyl ketones in the fat of Blue and Roquefort cheese. The average methyl ketone concentration (micromoles ketone/10 g cheese fat) of five Blue cheese samples was as follows: acetone, 1.7; 2-pentanone, 5.9; 2-heptanone, 11.2; 2-nonanone, 9.3; 2-undecanone, 2. 4. Considerable variation in ketone concentration was noted between samples, but no consistent differences were observed between Blue and Roquefort cheese. One Roquefort sample contained no acetone. The annount of ketone formed during cheese curing does not depend directly on the amount of available fatty acid precursor. There appears to be a selective conversion of the 8:0, and to a lesser extent the 6:0 and 10:0, fatty acids to methyl ketones by the Penicillium roqueforti spores. The concentration of the C₅, C₇, and C₉ secondary alcohols was determined in the same cheeses used for ketone analysis. The previously measured ketones acted as internal standards and facilitated a semi-quantitative calculation of alcohol concentrations from peak areas of gas chrorriatograms. The average alcohol concentration (micromoles alcohol/10 g cheese fat) in five Blue cheese samples was as follows: 2-pentanol, 0. 3; 2-heptanol, 2. 1; 2-nonanol, 0. 8. The alcohols were present in approximately the same ratios as their methyl ketone analogs, but at much lower concentrations. A synthetic Blue cheese flavor was prepared using a blend of butterfat, dry curd cottage cheese, cream, and salt as a base. The most typical flavor was obtained using the following' compounds: the 2:0, 4:0, 6:0, and 8:0 fatty acids at two-thirds the average concentration found in cheese; twice the average concentration of the C₃, C₅, C₇, C₉, and C₁₁ methyl ketones and C₅, C₇, and C₉ secondary alcohols found in cheese: 2.0 mg/kg of base of 2-phenylethanol; 1.5 mg/kg of base of ethyl butanoate; 6.0 mg/kg of base of both methyl hexanoate and methyl octanoate. Incorporation of higher acids caused a soapy flavor. The presence of 2-phenylethanol and the esters was judged as very important in duplicating Blue cheese flavor. The mycelia of Penicillium roqueforti appear to be more active in the reduction of methyl ketones to secondary alcohols than the spores. Yeasts associated with Blue cheese are capable of reducing methyl ketones to secondary alcohols. Yeasts also may play a role in Blue cheese flavor by producing ethanol and other alcohols and certain esters.
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