Ripeness stage effects on quality characteristics of smoothies made up of sweet cherries (P. aviumL., cv. ‘Lapins’)

  • Teresa De Pilli, Giuseppe Lopriore Department of Science of Agriculture of Food of Environment, University of Foggia, 25 Via Napoli, 71100 Foggia, Italy

Abstract

Sweet cherries are reported to contain substantial amounts of important phytochemicals such as anthocyanins and polyphenolics. Minimally processed fruits, like smoothies, retain a large quantity of phytochemicals and they could actually be considered a valid alternative to fresh eaten fruits. The effects of ripeness stage on quality and functional characteristics of smoothies of sweet cherries (P. avium L.) of a very important cultivar at international level (cv ‘Lapins’) and pasteurized by microwaves were studied. A significant decrease of L* (from 25.96 to 23.33) and hue angle values (from 41.22 to 33.32) with ripeness stages was observed. The polyphenol content of smoothies increased significantly in successive ripeness stage (from 375.39 to 541.07mg gallic acid per kg-1) as the antioxidant capacity (from 11142.00 to 12412.67 mmol TEAC per kg-1). Also, the sensorial analysis results showed that the overall acceptability score increased from the first to third ripeness stages (from 4.20 to 8.30). This research highlights the importance of ripeness stage also for processed fruit. In particular, in our case, the production of smoothies by ‘Lapins’ sweet cherries should be carried out with fruits of the late harvest period in order to maximise functional and sensorial properties of this product.

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