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Cereal Chem 65:262-266   |  VIEW ARTICLE

Fractionation and Composition of Commercial Corn Masa.

R. L. Pflugfelder, L. W. Rooney, and R. D. Waniska. Copyright 1988 by the American Association of Cereal Chemists, Inc. 

Corn masa from five processes at two commercial plants was fractionated and analyzed for starch, nonstarch polysaccharides, protein, lipid, and calcium. Masa from tottilla chip, corn chip, and table tortilla processes was compared. Masa dry matter consisted of 26-53% particles (cell clumps greater 63 micrometers), 41-65% cell fragments, and 5-9% dissolved solids and free lipid. Free starch granules constituted 90-97% of the smaller cell fragment fraction. Extensive gelatinization in free starch granules (47% loss of birefringence) was found only in corn chip masa made from soft corn given a severe heat treatment. Only 5 to 15% of the free starch granules in tortilla and tortilla chip masa lost birefringence. Calcium content of masa was affected by lime levels, cooking-steeping temperatures, and corn characteristics. Of total masa lipid, 25-50% was free and partially emulsified. Particle size distribution of masa was most influenced by grinding conditions. The proportion of free starch granules, dispersed lipid, and dissolved solid components in masa critically affects the properties of masa, tortillas, and fried masa products.

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